Wednesday, 7 December 2016

More Trumpmania.

Baltic Dry Index. 1186 -10   Brent Crude 53.79

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

Eurasian Snow cover. (How bad will winter be?)

The stock market is never obvious. It is designed to fool most of the people, most of the time.

Jesse Livermore.

Something’s not right about the Trumpmania stock rally. To this old dinosaur trader, it has all the feel of an orchestrated rigged market. Who is running the rig? I suspect the central banksters, alongside their favourite crony insiders. From the Brexit dump and pump, to the November Trumpmania bubble rally, to Italy’s collapse that isn’t, each attempt at a selloff has been routed with a rebound rally that trapped the logical shorts. Jesse Livermore couldn’t have run the rig better! Whether it is the central banksters reaching for the stars in an ever more desperate attempt to thwart the populist mob out to get the one percent over privileged elite, who can say. But something’s not right about this rally.

That said, the rig-masters can probably keep Trumpmania running just a little longer. The January 20th inauguration is still about 5 weeks away.  To my synthetic double options in stocks, if I were still trading, I now would add a few deep-out-of-the-money highly speculative put options for March in the stock indexes.

Below, what’s wrong with this?

Play the market only when all factors are in your favor. No person can play the market all the time and win. There are times when you should be completely out of the market, for emotional as well as economic reasons.

Jesse Livermore.

Red flags are flying for tech shares

By Sven Henrich Published: Dec 6, 2016 11:05 a.m. ET
Right at the time when markets were making new highs recently I mused whether this rally was based on hot air. I wanted to follow up on this assessment in light of the recent small pullback and provide an update on some of the technical signals.
One of the big technical red flags over the past few years has been weak internal participation. Particularly during the May 2015 highs we noted weakening internal structures that ultimately culminated in the August 2015 down move. The correction in January and February was no exception.

It is true that ever-expanding global central-bank intervention has continued to bring price back from the brink after each small correction and even now the latest rally has been brought about by promises of tax cuts, stimulus, etc.
But here again we can note an incredible bifurcation that raises red flags. Most notably most of the gains have really come from financial stocks. Indeed 50% of the Dow’s DJIA, +0.18% recent gain has come from 2 stocks only Goldman Sachs GS, +1.24%  and JPMorgan JPM, +0.52% Talk about a thin rally.

Yet the Nasdaq COMP, +0.45%   has pulled back over 2.3% since Nov. 24 despite making new all-time highs in between. While that does not sound like a big pullback it is nevertheless potentially significant. For one, last week the index has dropped back to July 2015 highs. That's an effective return of 0% over the course of almost 17 months:

Bill Gross warns investors of the ‘negatives’ of Trump policies

By Mark DeCambre Published: Dec 6, 2016 5:12 p.m. ET
Investors need to pay attention to the “negatives” of President-elect Donald Trump’s policies, bond guru Bill Gross said in a Tuesday missive to investors.
After shaking off initial worries about a Trump presidency, equity markets have mostly rode a wave of euphoria, with the Dow Jones Industrial Average DJIA, +0.18% rallying 5.5% and the S&P 500 SPX, +0.34%  climbing roughly 3% gain since election night.
Government bond prices, meanwhile, have unraveled. The yield on the benchmark 10-year Treasury note TMUBMUSD10Y, +0.16%  for example, surged from 1.6% at the end of September to 2.40% in recent trade Tuesday — a sizable move for government bonds as investors turned risk-giddy rather than risk-averse after the election. Bond prices move inversely to yields and bonds are seen as good buys in times of uncertainty.

Meanwhile, the banking sector XLF, +0.87% often viewed as the harbinger on economic outlook for a country, has catapulted higher, with banks like Goldman Sachs GS, +1.24% and Bank of America BAC, +1.47%  touching their highest levels since before the 2008 financial crisis rocked the banking sector.
But Gross has a warning for investors that have gotten hopped up on the hope that Trump will loosen regulations restrictive to Wall Street, deliver a slate of tax cuts to the well-to-do and invigorate the economy with a spate of infrastructure-improvement projects. Here is Gross’s perspective:

Back in the real world, gloom gets heaped on gloom. Political instability has never been higher since the 1963 Cuban missile crisis. In Great Britain, the Supreme Court seems to be flirting with a judgment that Britain joined a club it cannot exit. The 1972 Parliament irrevocably committed all others!

Our Great Nixonian Error world of fiat currencies, communist money, gets more unstable with each passing month. Fiat money seems to have passed its sell-by date. Below more red flags flapping away. The klaxons are also blaring away.

Restaurant traffic suffers first decline in five years as fear of recession takes hold

By Ciara Linnane Published: Dec 6, 2016 4:04 p.m. ET

Rising restaurant prices and the higher costs of residential rent and prescription drugs are battering the sector

Traffic at U.S. fast-food restaurant fell 1% in the third quarter to mark the sector’s first traffic decline in five years, the industry tracker NPD Group said Tuesday.

Total restaurant visits were also down 1%, hurt by the now familiar list of factors that have weighed this year, ranging from the higher costs of eating out, changing consumer behavior and higher bills for items such as rent and prescriptions.

“The term growing your business in a 1% world has become a popular mantra for the restaurant industry after six consecutive years of annual traffic gains of just 1%,” said NPD analyst Bonnie Riggs. “However, over the past six months, restaurant industry traffic growth has come to a standstill and quick-service restaurants, which have been the traffic growth drivers, are now experiencing a slowdown in visits.”

Eating out has become more expensive even as the cost of at-home dining has fallen, according to recent government data. The cost of food purchased for home use — that is, groceries — has fallen 2.4% in the past year, according to the October consumer price index. That’s the biggest decline over a 12-month period since the end of the Great Recession in 2009, as MarketWatch’s Jeffry Bartash has reported.

Volkswagen to face criminal charges in South Korea

By MarketWatch Published: Dec 6, 2016 10:29 p.m. ET
SEOUL--South Korea's trade regulator will file criminal charges against Volkswagen AG and five of its executives and impose a heavy fine on the German auto maker over advertising claims that its cars met emissions regulations.
The Fair Trade Commission said in a statement that Volkswagen had exaggerated advertising in which it stated that its cars sold in Korea met the European Union's strict Euro 5 emissions standards.

"The company deceived consumers with its false and exaggerated advertisements, which violated fair trade laws," the commission said in a statement on Wednesday.
Volkswagen advertised that its cars had passed Europe's emission standards in its brochures, website and commercials in Korea from December 2007 to November 2015. But such claims were challenged after the German auto maker said in September last year that it falsified U.S. emissions tests on some diesel-powered cars.
After a preliminary investigation into the claims, the commission in July warned of administrative and legal action, including fines, for false advertisements.
The commission said on Wednesday that it will file complaints with prosecutors against Volkswagen and its Korean unit and five executives in Germany and Korea, including Johannes Thammer, the current chief of Audi Volkswagen Korea, and Trevor Hill, who headed the local unit from 2007-12.

Europe's Populists Aren't Going Away

Dec 5, 2016 10:11 AM EST
Europe's revolt against politics as usual is anything but contained. Governments across the European Union were just beginning to celebrate the defeat of Austria's hard-right Freedom Party in Sunday's presidential election when the news arrived from Italy: Prime Minister Matteo Renzi will resign after his crushing defeat in the referendum on constitutional reform.

In neither case is it clear what happens next. But EU leaders need to think urgently about what they can do across the region to support orderly government in the service of liberal principles. Their failure to act up to now is the thread that ties these and other populist revolts together.

Austria's Freedom Party isn't going away. Norbert Hofer leads a movement that not long ago would have been seen as an extremist outlier -- proudly nationalist, anti-immigrant and anti-EU. Hofer was beaten in his bid for the presidency by Alexander Van der Bellen of the Green Party (running as a moderate independent), but he won an impressive 48.3 percent of the vote. Polls suggest the party will make a strong challenge in parliamentary elections due by September 2018.

In Italy, the populist uprising is still gathering force. Renzi's margin of defeat was so humiliating -- roughly 20 percentage points -- that he might find it difficult to play a main part in the coming negotiations about forming a new government, much less (as some had imagined) end up leading it. The prospect is for yet another caretaker government, pending new parliamentary elections. When they happen, the populist anti-EU Five Star Movement will be a foremost contender.

Meantime, an effectively rudderless Italy has a flatlining economy and a still-unresolved banking crisis. The financial mess may be about to get worse. Renzi's defeat has created such uncertainty that it calls into question plans to recapitalize Monte dei Paschi di Siena, the weakest of the country's big banks.

A banking failure in Italy would be especially potent in political terms because bank bonds are widely held by households, and current EU doctrine requires bondholders to carry much of the burden in the event of a collapse.

The game of speculation is the most uniformly fascinating game in the world. But it is not a game for the stupid, the mentally lazy, the person of inferior emotional balance, or the get-rich-quick adventurer. They will die poor.

Jesse Livermore.-for-tech-shares-2016-12-06Share

At the Comex silver depositories Tuesday final figures were: Registered 35.15 Moz, Eligible 143.63 Moz, Total 178.78 Moz. 

Crooks and Scoundrels Corner

The bent, the seriously bent, and the totally doubled over.

Italian minister, after talking to Renzi, sees new election likely in February

Tue Dec 6, 2016 | 8:50am EST
Italy could have an election as early as February, a minister in Prime Minister Matteo Renzi's outgoing government said on Tuesday, speaking after talking to Renzi.
The comments will add to growing support for a quick vote as the only way to avoid protracted political limbo in Italy following Sunday's "No" vote on Renzi's constitutional reforms.
Renzi announced he would step down after his heavy defeat. President Sergio Mattarella told him to stay on until parliament had approved the 2017 budget, expected later this week. Then, the president said, Renzi could tender his resignation.
Before the referendum, most commentators, and financial markets, assumed that even if Renzi lost and resigned, a temporary unelected government would be installed to tide Italy over until the end of parliament's term in 2018.
But a chorus of comments from party chiefs suggests consensus may be growing for an early vote in spring.
"I forecast there will be the will to go to elections in February," Interior Minister Angelino Alfano, the head of a small center-right party that is a crucial part of Renzi's ruling coalition, told Corriere della Sera daily on Tuesday.
Significantly, Alfano said he made his forecast after discussing the issue with Renzi.
Renzi is still leader of the centre-left Democratic Party (PD), which has the largest number of parliamentarians, so it is unlikely any new government could be formed without his backing.
The PD's top brass will meet on Wednesday to discuss the referendum defeat. Then Renzi's intentions, and the willingness of his party to continue to back him, may become clearer.
The two largest opposition parties, the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement and the right-wing Northern League, are both pushing hard for elections.
The obstacle most often cited is that the electoral law needs to be changed to ensure a clear winner, and hammering out a deal among the parties on a new system will take many months.
At present two different systems are in place for the two chambers of parliament - widely seen as a recipe for instability. However, the parties seem increasingly willing to bury their differences over the ideal system and risk an election even if the result could be inconclusive.
Alfano's February forecast may be unrealistic. A crucial ruling by the constitutional court on the legitimacy of the current electoral law, known as the Italicum, is not expected until the early months of 2017.
Only after the court rules whether the Italicum can be used, or spells out the aspects that must be changed, will the parties will be free to go to the polls.

Poll: Britain's EU divorce most likely to end with bilateral trade deal

Tue Dec 6, 2016 | 8:32am EST
Britain will most likely leave the European Union having signed a bilateral trade agreement, according to a Reuters poll of economists on Tuesday that also suggested there remains little chance of the country slipping into recession.
Since the June 23 decision to leave the EU, Britain's economy has performed much better than had been previously feared. The Bank of England is not expected to loosen monetary policy further in the foreseeable future.
Prime Minister Theresa May has said she intends to trigger Article 50, which begins the two-year countdown to Britain's formal departure from the EU, by the end of March. But so far there have been few clues as to what direction the divorce proceedings will take.
A bilateral agreement between the EU and Britain is the most likely outcome from the divorce, said most economists in the poll who answered an extra question ranking four possible outcomes in order of likelihood.
Some countries have negotiated deals with the EU to gain greater access to each others' markets for goods, eased customs duties and set rules on standards.
"We still don't have a lot of clarity over what they want to achieve. A series of bilateral deals would be some sort of half-way house," said Paul Hollingsworth at Capital Economics.
It was a close call between second and third place, but the second most probable outcome was a standalone World Trade Organization membership without any specific agreement. Trading based on WTO rules is seen by most economists as the option likely to weigh most heavily on Britain's growth prospects.
The third most likely option was membership of the European Economic Area which allows for free movement of goods and services with the EU. Members must pay a subscription fee and allow unrestricted migration.
There is continued speculation that May is leaning more towards a "hard Brexit" - giving up on trying to maintain access to the EU single market in favor of imposing controls on immigration.

There is nothing new on Wall Street or in stock speculation. What has happened in the past will happen again, and again, and again. This is because human nature does not change, and it is human emotion, solidly build into human nature, that always gets in the way of human intelligence. Of this I am sure.

Jesse Livermore.

Solar  & Related Update.

With events happening fast in the development of solar power and graphene, I’ve added this section. Updates as they get reported. Is converting sunlight to usable cheap AC or DC energy mankind’s future from the 21st century onwards? DC? A quantum computer next?

Today, one day after I came across my first dead EV, a Nissan Leaf, blocking up one lane of a quite complicated junction, with an animated driver in a heated conversation on his phone, The Express newspaper heralds a new development in supercaps. I look forward to seeing if the peer reviews back up the article’s claims.

END OF BATTERIES: Huge breakthrough means you'll be able to charge your phone in SECONDS

SCIENTISTS tonight hailed one of the biggest technological advancements in years as they unveiled a revolutionary new gadget which could make batteries redundant forever.

By Nick Gutteridge PUBLISHED: 00:01, Tue, Dec 6, 2016 | UPDATED: 09:05, Tue, Dec 6, 2016
British boffins said the futuristic system will allow people to fully charge mobile phones and laptops in seconds and could make petrol powered cars redundant within decades. 
Experts predicted it will have a “seismic impact” on people’s everyday lives and said it represents the biggest leap in electrical storage since the battery was invented in 1800. 
Dr Ian Hamerton, who led the team of brainboxes behind the project, declared: “We believe that this is an extremely exciting and potentially game-changing development.”
The scientists, from two leading British universities, say they have developed cutting edge high density supercapacitors which will replace the need for batteries in hundreds of everyday appliances.
The technology could rapidly revolutionise mobile phones, tablets and laptops - which are currently constrained both in terms of power and size by the need for batteries. 
And it could also provide a massive breakthrough for electric cars, current models of which have failed to capture the public imagination largely because of limited ranges and long recharging times of around eight hours. 
Scientists say that, using the new supercapacitors, electrically powered vehicles could travel just as far as a conventional petrol car, and be recharged in the same time it takes to fill up at the pump. 
The technology could be used for public transport too. China currently has buses running on rudimentary supercapacitors but, but they are inefficient and need to recharge every two or three stops. 
However, following this breakthrough experts say that would be extended to every 20-30 stops, with recharging times also drastically slashed to just a few minutes. 
Supercapacitors, which store energy using electrodes and electrolytes rather than chemicals like batteries, have long been hailed as an alternative power source due to their ability to charge and discharge electricity rapidly over very large numbers of cycles. 
However, the technology has been held back because of their poor energy density per kilogramme - currently just one twentieth of existing battery technology - meaning they have been unable to perform basic tasks. 
But the new supercapacitors, which have been developed using the same technology applied when making soft contact lenses, are proven to be between 1,000-10,000 times more powerful than existing batteries. 
Dr Brendan Howlin from the University of Surrey, which led the research, said: “There is a global search for new energy storage technology and this new ultra capacity supercapacitor has the potential to open the door to unimaginably exciting developments.”


The monthly Coppock Indicators finished November

DJIA: 19124  +53 Up NASDAQ:  5324 +41 Up. SP500: 2198 +58 Up.

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