Saturday, 23 January 2016

Weekend Update 23/01/2016 Markets and Spooks.

Up  first, the global stock markets. Who’s up, who’s down and who’s roughly unchanged. 

Below, what happens when all the central bankster stock market rigging and voodoo economics fails. Despite Friday’s rally in oil and most stocks, it looks to me more like a bull raid to squeeze the shorts in an oversold bear market.  Despite Friday's rally, were the market to close out the month at Friday's closing prices, both the DJIA and S&P500 Monthly Coppock Indicators would turn negative generating a bear signal.

Those more interested in the American drunken sailors who couldn’t sail straight, except straight into captivity in Iran before being released minus their sim cards, just scroll further down to the naval spy mission gone wrong.

Global Shareholders Have $27 Trillion Locked in Bear Markets

January 21, 2016 — 12:00 AM GMT
At least 40 stock markets around the world with a total value of $27 trillion are in bear territory, as investors witness the worst start to a year on record.

The U.K. was the latest market to fall 20 percent from its peak, while India is 1 percent away from crossing the threshold that traders describe as the onset of bear market. Nineteen countries with $30 trillion have declined between 10 percent and 20 percent, thereby entering a so-called correction, according to data compiled by Bloomberg from the 63 biggest markets.

Click on the link for the chart.

Investors pull $24 billion from equity funds in January

Published: Jan 22, 2016 2:57 p.m. ET
Investors pulled $24 billion from equity funds in the first three weeks of January, as stock markets took a plunge following a decline in oil prices, Bank of America said Friday.
Emerging markets
The rout has been deepest in emerging-market equities, as funds have seen outflows for every week in the past three months, with investors redeeming $2.3 billion in the week ended Jan. 20—the largest outflow in 19 weeks.

Funds covering tech, financials, and consumer sectors all recorded their largest weekly outflows in nearly six months during that same period, while health care saw the largest outflows in over three months.

Investors fled to the perceived safety of government bonds as the S&P 500 SPX, +2.03%  broke below its Aug. 25 closing low—viewed as a major support level. The S&P 500 is down 7.2% since the beginning of the year and the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +1.33%  has lost roughly 8%, despite a recent rally.

The $5-billion inflow to government bond funds was the largest in 12 months, according to Bank of America. The government bond rally pushed Treasury prices higher and drove Thursday the 10-year Treasury yield TMUBMUSD10Y, +1.15% the Treasury market’s benchmark, to its lowest level since April.
As risk sentiment diminished, investors also pulled out of high-yield funds, which include so-called junk bonds that have low credit ratings and are viewed as risky investments.

Citi’s U.S. High-Yield Market Index has lost about 5% year-to-date, according to data from BMO Capital Markets.

U.S. stocks score first weekly gain of the new year

Published: Jan 22, 2016 4:01 p.m. ET
U.S. stocks ended sharply higher Friday, scoring their first weekly gain of the new year, as oil futures surged and investors were encouraged by hints of potential central-bank stimulus in Europe and Japan after a tough week for global markets. The S&P 500 SPX, +2.03% closed up 38 points, or 2%, at 1,906, with all 10 of its main sectors in positive territory, led by energy and tech. The Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +1.33% closed 211 points higher, or 1.3%, at 16,093. The Nasdaq Composite COMP, +2.66% closed up 119 points, or 2.7%, at 4,591. The indexes were still on track for heavy monthly losses, down between 7% and 9% since the beginning of the year.

In US Navy news, this fiasco was definitely not in the best tradition of US Navy founder John Paul Jones.

Rogue Riverine Reconnaissance? The Iranian Incursion Mystery Deepens

by Justin Raimondo • January 20, 2016

The events surrounding the interception of ten American sailors in two US riverine boats who somehow wandered into Iranian waters continues to baffle the curious. Not that the American media is to be included among those asking questions: aside from the outraged shrieks of the neoconservative outlets over the alleged “appeasement” of Iran and the so-called “humiliation” of the sailors, no one is asking the most pertinent question of all: how did they get there in the first place?

I raised the most obvious questions here: simultaneously, both Glenn Greenwald and Rachel Maddow made similar observations. Now the mystery grows deeper as the ever-changing Official Story – which is, currently, that a “navigational error” was made – collapses under its own weight. This story line was never all that convincing to begin with – after all, did both boats fall victim to the same “error”? Was this not a routine journey undertaken hundreds of times? Well, there’s always a first time, right? The GPS devices on both boats could have failed at the same time, although the odds are against it.

However, now we learn from the Iranians that the GPS devices on both boats were fully functional:

“[A] statement from Iran’s parliament cited Iranian Revolutionary Guard Corps officials as saying that the U.S. sailors should have been aware of their location.

“’The coordinates recorded on the GPS devices taken from the 10 US marines (sic) confirmed their trespassing’ into waters off heavily-guarded Farsi island, the semi-official Fars news agency reported of the parliamentary statement.”

Moreover, the official statement from the US military contradicts the “navigational error” narrative:

“[I]nitial operational reports showed that while in transit from Kuwait to Bahrain the RCBs deviated 
from their planned course on their way to the refueling. The command investigation will determine what caused the change in course and why the RCBs entered into Iranian territorial waters in the vicinity of Farsi Island.”

If the reason for the course deviation was “navigational error,” then why is any investigation necessary? And as it turns out, there was no error: the GPs devices on board were working just fine. To make matters worse for Washington, the Iranians returned everything on the ships with the exception of “two SIM cards that appear to have been removed from two handheld satellite phones,” as the Pentagon statement avers. Those cards will tell the Iranians whom the crew members were communicating with on their sojourn, when those communications took place – and, perhaps, what the Americans’ real mission was all about.

Do we have to wait much longer for the other shoe to drop?

---- Yet we all lived happily ever after, in spite of this last minute glitch. The sailors were released. And not only that, but reportedly Secretary of State John Kerry told the Iranians that they might as well utilize this speed bump on the road to détente to their mutual advantage, and so another deal was made: US citizens held in Iran were let go while Iranians imprisoned in American jails for violating sanctions were released, and extradition orders were dropped against a number of others.

But wait: not all the Iranians imprisoned in Iran came back to the US. No, I’m not talking about Robert Levinson, a mysterious figure who disappeared in Iran years ago and may or may not have been working for the CIA. As the New York Times reports, while the euphoria over the prisoner swap was reaching a crescendo,

”At the same time, a mystery deepened over one of the freed American prisoners, who apparently chose to remain in Iran.

“Under the deal announced on Saturday and completed on Sunday, the Iranians released four 
dual-national Americans of Iranian descent, some held for years, and permitted a fifth American imprisoned in December – whose arrest had not been publicly disclosed before – to leave.”

According to the Times, “It seemed that nobody in Iran knew” Nosratollah Khosravi-Roodsari “had been arrested, and nobody seemed to know any more about him. When the Swiss diplomats who had arranged for the departure of the other three Americans offered him a seat on their plane, they said, Mr. Khosravi-Roodsari opted to stay.”

Little information has been released about Khosravi-Roodsari by Washington, and none by Tehran. The
initial announcement from the semi-official Fars News Agency did not even mention Khosravi-Roodsari.

---- Another surprise was the release of Matthew Trevithick, 29, yet another prisoner no one (except his parents and our government) knew was behind bars in Iran. His resume is quite impressive: an intern at the Wilson Center, a stint in Kurdistan at the American University in Sulaymaniyah, four years at the American University in Kabul, later co-founder of the Syria Research and Evaluation Organization (SREO) with headquarters in Turkey. SREO, which the State Department calls “a valuable partner,” appears to be involved in transporting Syrian refugees into Europe. They also appear to be part of the joint US-Islamist effort to overthrow Syrian strongman Bashar al-Assad: a poster distributed by SREO reads “ISIS and Assad are one and the same” – a revelation the Christian and Alawite citizens of Syria would no doubt dispute.

Like US intelligence operations since the beginning of the cold war, aside from its “humanitarian” façade, SREO has its tentacles into American cultural organizations, in this case the PEN/Faulkner Foundation, a gaggle of Washington-based literary do-gooders and thinly disguised spooks with literary pretensions. Trevithick co-authored the autobiography  of the Afghan puppet government’s first Minister of Education, which was graced with an introduction by US ambassador Ryan Crocker.

What was Trevithick doing in Iran? He was there ostensibly to study Dari – President Obama described him as a “student” – but he apparently already knew Dari, and it looks like the Iranians figured he was studying something else.

It’s all so transparent: why on earth Trevithick’s handlers sent him to Iran in the first place is yet another layer of the mystery surrounding the prisoner swap. Between the sailors who couldn’t sail straight and the spooks who couldn’t spy straight, one has to wonder how the Empire has managed to stay afloat as long as it has.

No comments:

Post a Comment