We Have Finally Made “The Show”

We finally made the FINGURURADAR  infographic.   Feels like we have made “the Show“.



Your shower shoes have fungus on them. You’ll never make it to the bigs with fungus on your shower shoes. Think classy, you’ll be classy. If you win 20 in the show, you can let the fungus grow back and the press’ll think you’re colorful. Until you win 20 in the show, however, it means you are a slob.
Crash Davis, Bull Durham

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QOTD: Free Fallin’

I’m old enough to have lived in a country where, if you were willing to work hard, you could have a fairly nice life. You could support a family and even get a shot at owning your home but you never thought you’d get a swimming pool. Now the culture has hypnotized people into thinking they’re really nothing if they’re not wealthy and a Kardashian.  – Tom Petty,  R.I.P.

(QOTD = Quote of the Day)

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Why You Need Blogs

Here is a repost of the piece we did way back when.  More relevant today than ever as data and news have grown exponentially over the past few years.

Why Do You Need Bloggers?

To help you sift through the data:

The pace of data creation on the Internet is growing at an exponential rate. In any 48-hour period in 2010, more data was created than had been created by all of humanity in the past 30,000 years, according to a presentation by entrepreneur Yuri Milner. – WaPost

Why do we blog?   To discipline our thoughts and sharpen our framework of how we see the world.


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Mrs. Watanabe Can Stand Many Things, But Not Zero Percent

Good piece posted on Bloomberg about how Japanese retail is chasing yield in Turkey.

It’s those 10 percent-plus rates across the Turkish bond curve — among the highest in major emerging markets — that are luring Mr. and Mrs. Watanabe to the country’s assets.

Starved for return by near-zero rates at home, individual investors have propelled a 27 percent jump in Japanese mutual funds’ investments in lira-denominated bonds this year. At 50.8 billion yen ($450 million) through August, it’s poised to be the biggest annual increase since 2012, according to data from Japan’s Investment Trusts Association.  – Bloomberg

Another example that the zeitgeist of the global markets is yield chasing.

As long as there’s a decent economic narrative — the current being “synchronized global economic expansion” — valuations, fundamentals, and event risk take a back seat to the yield seekers.

Surely Ms. Watanable knows about Turkey’s twin deficits and its highest inflation in almost a half decade, not mention the risk of being pulled into Middle East war.   Ten percent can forgive a multitude of sins in today’s NIRP, ZIRP, and one percent world.  Until it doesn’t.

Seeing Japanese retail pile into a market usually was a signal of a top back in the day.

Turkey_Ms Wantabe

Nevertheless, we do not see an end to the yield-seeking zeitgeist until U.S. policy rates hit 3 percent plus (the market thinks never), the Fed balance sheet shrinks at least ten percent, and Euros are ready to roll on QT.   EMs are the place to be in this environment.

A few yuuuge hiccups along the way?  Absolutely.  We are expecting one this month.

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Option Value of Cash More Valuable When Scarce

Look at the date of the cash peak and trough.

Not a perfect timing chart, but you know you’re in the zip code.  Unless, of course, this time is different.

It could take more time this time, however.


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COTD: Venezuela Oil Production (t/bpd)


Ergo (among other things), this:


There is some minimum threshold level of reserves most central banks will not cross and willresort to various policies to protect and ration foreign exchange reserves, including devaluation, import restrictions, capital controls, selective default, and a full-blown debt moratorium.

Venezuela has used most of these except the latter.   That may be tested in the next five weeks as the country has $3.5 billion of debt payments coming due, mainly by the state-owned oil company known as PDVSA.

The country has been very crafty finding ways keeping PDVSA from defaulting  by rationing reserves, selective defaults to suppliers and other creditors, and finding foreign sponsors, such as China and Russia.

The next few months may be the breaking point for the country, however, especially after U.S. sanctions really begin to bite.


(COTD:  Chart of the Day)

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Third Quarter Review – September 29

Global Stock Indices

Global stock markets performed well in the Q3, especially the emerging markets.  Capital is flying into the sector.  Argentina looked unstoppable up almost 20 percent in the quarter with another 4 percent increase last week, and now up over 50 percent on the year.   Guess this is the time to start selling at least for trade to reload lower.

Greece down on profit taking and IMF noise.



Global 10-year Bond Yields

Yield chasers continued to commit capital to the high-yielding emerging markets such as Brazil and Indonesia.  Portugal came in big on recapturing of its investment grade rating.

Global bond yields on the rise in the past few weeks.  We are expecting a taper tantrum in Europe and a significant rise in European yields this month.   That trade is dependent on how the situation in Spain unfolds.


Global Currencies

The Argentina peso was the weakest currency for the quarter and, in part, explains the country’s big equity gains.  China showed strength but was weaker for the month of September.  The dollar index was down almost 3 percent but looks like it has put in a bottom and has been stronger the past few weeks.   Catalonia should give the dollar a further boost.


Select Commodities

Zinc up big in Q3 and after a few weeks of selling ended the month strong. Crude trading better based on the perception than demand is growing and the OPEC and U.S shale obsession seems to have waned for the moment. Grains continue to trade poorly.


Other Risk Indicators

U.S. semiconductors rocked the free world in the Q3 along with the rest of the tech sector.  The Stress Index came off the lows but remains below zero, which constitutes normal financial conditions. A negative number connotes very favorable financial conditions. The index has been declining (favorable) over the past few weeks, however.


On The Radar

We are expecting a sharp trap door sell-off in the risk markets in October triggered by a myriad of potential events, including a bond market temper tantrum in Europe,  a China economic or political shock coming out of the 19th Party Congress beginning on the 18th,  severely overbought markets, geopolitical shocks, and others.

We are watching the fallout from the Catalonia vote, politics in China, progress on the Trump tax reform deal,  the continued sell-off in global bond markets.   Looking for emerging markets to cool off, which are way overbought.


Key Charts












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Sector ETF Performance – September 29


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GMM At The Movies: Darkest Hour

This looks sooooo good.   Coming to a theatre near you on November 22.

“You cannot reason with a tiger when your head is in its mouth” – “Winnie” – FDR’s nickname for Winston Churchill


Churchill was a fan of a drink, in particular Champagne. He said of it: “I could not live without Champagne. In victory I deserve it. In defeat I need it.” – Express

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Global Risk Monitor – September 29




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