Friday, 8 November 2013

Euro Panic!!!

Baltic Dry Index. 1593 -09

LIR Gold Target by 2019: $30,000.  Revised due to QE programs.

"Gold would have value if for no other reason than that it enables a citizen to fashion his financial escape from the state."

William F. Rickenbacker

While the Twitter Inc IPO bubbled, see Crooks Corner, the ECB hit the panic button. The ECB’s internal reports must be dire. The ECB has suddenly joined in the fiat currency race to the bottom, beggar thy neighbour be damned. Euros anyone? Euro serfs have one last chance to swap euro confetti for precious metals. Fewer than one in a million will likely do so.  Now it’s all over to China, with the upcoming Communist Party plenum meeting to set policy for the next 5 to 10 years. I wonder how many euros they want to hold for the rest of this decade?  Stay long precious metals for the final act in the Great Nixonian Error of fiat money.

The bankster in his mansion,
The taxpayer at his gate,
Draghi made them High or lowly,
He disordered their estate.

With apologies to All things bright and beautiful. 

ECB's Draghi stuns markets with rate cut but deflation still looms

The ECB cut the main refinancing rate a quarter point to 0.25pc and stands “technically ready” to reduce the discount rate below zero if necessary

The European Central Bank has cut interest rates to a record low to head off deflation, stunning markets and triggering a sharp fall in the euro.

Mario Draghi, the ECB’s president, said the outlook has changed abruptly over the past few weeks, acknowledging for the first time that the eurozone faces a “broad-based and prolonged” bout of inflation below target.

He denied that the region is slipping into a Japan-style deflation trap but said the outright drop in prices over the past quarter has been striking, and makes it harder for southern Europe’s high-debt states to cope with austerity.

The ECB cut the main refinancing rate a quarter point to 0.25pc and stands “technically ready” to reduce the discount rate below zero if necessary. Mr Draghi said the governing council was “wholly in agreement about the need to act”, with differences only over timing.

This suggest that the ECB’s German-led hawks may have become more alert to the deflation risk, or that they face overwhelming pressure from the majority bloc of Latin states and their allies. Bundesbank chief Jens Weidmann reportedly opposed the move.

The euro plunged two cents against the dollar before recovering slightly to €1.3370, welcome relief for France and Italy, where a chorus of voices has been demanding action to protect exports. France’s industry minister Arnaud Montebourg said last week that a 10pc fall in the euro could save 150,000 French jobs, and issued a veiled threat to mobilise the treaty powers of EU ministers to shape the exchange rate.

The currency had risen 8pc against the dollar from June to late October, a form of monetary tightening. It is still up 30pc against the Japanese yen over the past year.

“The ECB had to do something. The rise of the euro was becoming deflationary and threatening to choke off growth,” said David Bloom from HSBC. “It is very rare for a central bank to change its policy so dramatically from one month to the next so something profound must have happened.”

France Credit Rating Cut to AA by S&P on Growth Outlook

By Shamim Adam - Nov 8, 2013 7:22 AM GMT
France’s credit rating was cut by Standard & Poor’s, which said President Francois Hollande’s policies will fail to spur growth and fix public finances.

The nation’s long-term foreign and local-currency grade was lowered one step to AA from AA+, S&P said in a statement today. France lost the top rating at S&P in January 2012. The outlook on the grade, now the third highest, is stable, according to S&P. French bonds fell, sending the 10-year yield up 2 basis points to 2.39 percent at 8:05 a.m.

The downgrade underlines how Europe’s second-largest economy is struggling to recover in the wake of the financial crisis and recession. Hollande hasn’t managed to reverse a slide in France’s competitiveness with changes to labor laws and payroll taxes, the European Commission said in a Nov. 5 report.

“The downgrade reflects our view that the French government’s current approach to budgetary and structural reforms to taxation, as well as to product, services, and labor markets, is unlikely to substantially raise France’s medium-term growth prospects,” S&P said. “Moreover, we see France’s fiscal flexibility constrained by successive governments’ moves to increase already high tax levels, and what we see as the government’s inability to significantly reduce total government spending.”

Euro Set for Biggest Two-Week Slide in Year on France Cut, ECB

By Kevin Buckland & Candice Zachariahs - Nov 8, 2013 7:08 AM GMT
The euro fell, set for its biggest two-week decline in more than a year, as France’s downgrade by Standard & Poor’s added to pressure on the currency after an interest-rate cut by the region’s central bank yesterday.

The dollar held gains against most major peers before a U.S. jobs report today and after data yesterday showed the economy expanded more than forecast, fueling bets for an earlier taper in Federal Reserve stimulus. The Australian and New Zealand dollars strengthened after import gains outpaced economists’ estimates in China, the biggest trading partner of both South Pacific nations.

“For France, the main issue is a lack of economic growth and a lack of reform,” said David Forrester, a senior vice president for Group of 10 foreign-exchange strategy at Macquarie Bank Ltd. in Sydney. “The risks to the euro remain to the downside.”

And talking of China. Is China about to prick the west’s final bubble?

China’s Li Tells Local Governments to Stop Setting Up Companies

By Bloomberg News - Nov 8, 2013 5:47 AM GMT
hina Premier Li Keqiang said local governments should stop directly investing in or setting up companies “in principle,” according to comments released a day before leaders gather to discuss economic policy.

Allowing local authorities to invest in companies or to intervene in their operations can ‘easily’’ lead to monopolies and market barriers, Li was cited as saying at a Nov. 1 meeting, according to a statement posted on the central government’s website today.

The remarks reflect Li’s broader campaign to reduce the state role in the economy and come ahead of a Nov. 9-12 meeting where the Communist Party’s central committee may unveil sweeping economic reforms.
The party is also seeking to rein in borrowing by local governments through companies set up to build infrastructure such as roads, bridges and sewers.

When Li took office in March, he pledged to open the economy to market forces and strip power from the government. That process will be “very painful and even feel like cutting one’s wrist,” he said then.

Instead of trying to drive economic development, local governments should act as policemen to ensure fair competition, Li said at the meeting, which was convened to discuss changes to the role of local governments.

The party gathering that starts tomorrow may introduce measures to let domestic private investors enter industries now dominated by state-owned companies, Deutsche Bank AG economist Ma Jun wrote in an e-mail Oct. 31

China party says no to political reform on eve of key meet

BEIJING Fri Nov 8, 2013 2:30am EST
(Reuters) - China's Communist Party gave an emphatic no to any political reform that may threaten its rule in a lengthy document published on Friday, the day before it starts a key meeting to set the economic agenda for the next decade.

While party leaders have promised unprecedented reforms at the four-day closed-door plenum, these will focus on economic issues, and there have been no expectations of Western-style political reforms.
In a turgid full-page article in the official People's Daily, the party's historical research institute was emphatic that China could only prosper under the party's leadership.

Elsewhere in Asia, fear of a Fed double cross.  Suppose QE Forever isn’t forever! Asia had also better get in on the currency race to the bottom. The whole world will devalue against each other for competitive export advantage. Lunacy of course, but it’s all part of our new 21st century voodoo economics. Not to worry, the central banksters who created all this mess but never saw it coming; will print our way out like Gideon Greenspan of Zimbabwe. And we all know what a successful country Zimbabwe is.

"The great merit of gold is precisely that it is scarce; that its quantity is limited by nature; that it is costly to discover, to mine, and to process; and that it cannot be created by political fiat or caprice."

Henry Hazlitt

Indian Rupee Leads Losses in Asian Currencies on Fed Outlook

By Lilian Karunungan - Nov 8, 2013 3:51 AM GMT
India’s rupee led losses in Asian currencies this week as overseas investors cut holdings of the region’s stocks on speculation U.S. policy makers will cut stimulus this year.

The Bloomberg-JPMorgan Asia Dollar Index fell 0.1 percent in the five days, following last week’s 0.5 percent drop. Third-quarter U.S. expansion topped estimates and growth in service industries unexpectedly accelerated last month, data showed this week. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg Oct. 17-18 predicted the Fed would begin paring stimulus in March.

“Asian currencies declined this week as markets think the Fed will scale back its stimulus earlier than expected,” said Leong Sook Mei, Southeast Asian head of global markets research in Singapore at Bank of Tokyo-Mitsubishi UFJ Ltd. “Flows are not coming back.”

The Indian rupee lost 1.4 percent this week to 62.6325 per dollar as of 9:13 a.m. in Mumbai, according to prices from local banks compiled by Bloomberg. Indonesia’s rupiah weakened 0.6 percent to 11,401,
Thailand’s baht fell 0.5 percent to 31.36 and Malaysia’s ringgit dropped 0.5 percent to 3.1873.

Overseas funds sold $652 million more South Korean, Thai, Indonesian and Philippine stocks than they bought this week, exchange data show.

We end for the week with the latest update from OPEC. Long before 2035, the Great Nixonian Error of fiat money will have come to its crashing end. Stay long physical precious metals. The world will not forever swap real goods and services of real intrinsic tangible value, for pretty bits of paper or electronic IOUs, which can be generated out of nothing in unlimited quantities. The west’s free lunch will come to an end.

Opec says $7.5 trillion investment needed in energy

Opec upgrades oil demand forecasts on expectation of 380 million new cars on China's roads by 2035 and says world needs to invest nearly $8 trillion on new energy facilities

By Andrew Critchlow 1:30PM GMT 07 Nov 2013
Petrol prices are unlikely to fall significantly anytime soon based on the latest long-term projections for the global oil market released by the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries (Opec).

The group of 12 major producing nations estimates that meeting increases in world oil demand through to 2035 will require $7.5 trillion (£4.6 trillion) worth of investment into building new infrastructure such as production plants, refineries and pipelines.

Opec, which accounts for a third of the world’s oil supply, says it will now have to pump 2.6 million barrels a day (b/d) more crude than it had originally anticipated by 2035, bringing its total long-term production estimate to 37 million b/d.

Opec said that total world oil demand will grow by 20 million b/d to 108 million b/d by 2035, which is an upward revision on it previous forecast. Total global demand for energy will increase by 52pc over the same period, according to the report.

The upgrades in long-term oil demand presented in Opec’s 2013 World Oil Outlook – the first since the group started publishing its forecasts - are largely being driven by rapid economic growth from Asia.

Car ownership in China and emerging Asian economies is cited by Opec as a major factor behind its new outlook for world oil demand. The number of passenger cars in China is expected to increase by 380 million vehicles by 2035, which is equal to 320 cars per 1,000 people in the country.

“A major reassessment has been undertaken for the prospects for car ownership in China,” said Opec in an extract from the 346-page report. “Earlier projections emphasized the constraints to growth, in particular through congestion and the inability of infrastructure to keep pace with the strong growth in vehicle sales. This report revisits that assumption, and leads to considerably higher vehicle stock growth than previously thought.”

“Those who don't know history are destined to repeat it.”

Edmund Burke

At the Comex silver depositories Thursday final figures were: Registered 44.13 Moz, Eligible 125.50 Moz, Total 169.63 Moz.  

Crooks and Scoundrels Corner
The bent, the seriously bent, and the totally doubled over.

Today bubble mania returns. Tulips anyone? With bubble mania like this, the Fedster’s QE Forever really needs to be forever and beyond. One hint of tapering or the end of ZIRP, and Twitter’s twits crash and burn.

"a company for carrying out an undertaking of great advantage, but nobody to know what it is".

Twitter, with apologies to The South Seas Bubble, 1720.

Twitter Surges in Trading Debut After $1.82 Billion Share Sale

By Sarah Frier & Lee Spears - Nov 7, 2013 10:09 PM GMT
Twitter Inc. jumped 73 percent in its trading debut, as investors paid a premium for its promises of fast growth.

The stock rose to $44.90 at the close in New York from the initial public offering price of $26, delivering the biggest one-day pop for an IPO that raised more than $1 billion since Ltd. debuted in 2007, according to data compiled by Bloomberg. Twitter sold 70 million shares, raising $1.82 billion.

The microblogging website picked a price that valued it higher than Facebook Inc. and still drew more interest than anticipated. The San Francisco-based company, which is unprofitable and has one-fifth as many users as Facebook, is benefiting from investors’ thirst for companies that will grow quickly in expanding markets like mobile advertising.

“The company did everything to secure the most cash for itself while leaving some money for the IPO buyers,” said Josef Schuster, the founder of IPOX Schuster LLC, a Chicago-based manager of about $1.9 billion. “You need a pop at the opening to leave a good taste with everyone. They did a pretty good job managing the whole situation.”

At the current price, Twitter is valued at $24.9 billion, or 22 times estimated 2014 sales of $1.14 billion, according to analyst projections compiled by Bloomberg. That compares with 11.2 times that Facebook traded at today, and price-to-sales ratio of 11.7 for LinkedIn Corp.

Facebook declined 3.2 percent, and LinkedIn fell 4.2 percent today. At its market debut in 2012, Facebook’s stock was flat, propped up by bankers, while LinkedIn’s more than doubled on the day it went public in 2011.

The pricing puts the onus on Twitter to deliver on its promises of fast growth after earlier pitching shares as low as $17. Chief Executive Officer Dick Costolo has rallied investor interest in Twitter’s rapid sales curve -- with revenue more than doubling annually -- even with no clear path to making a profit.

“The boom can last only as long as the credit expansion progresses at an ever-accelerated pace. The boom comes to an end as soon as additional quantities of fiduciary media are no longer thrown upon the loan market...”

Ludwig Von Mises

Another weekend, and while murderous Mao’s successor’s get to watch each other like hawks in Beijing and cling on to unelected power, I have something much more important and uplifting to attend. The Baptism of my great-niece, Skye.  Have a great weekend everyone.

The monthly Coppock Indicators finished October:
DJIA: +178 Up. NASDAQ: +238 Up. SP500: +217 Up. The Fed’s final bubble continues to grow, until QE Forever isn’t forever.

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