201712.27
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Rising ‘Dollar’ Re-Rises? Part 2, The Fruits of Our Obsession

I suppose it’s easy to look at gold and see only fear. It is, after all, the ultimate currency hedge. Therefore, if the price is rising there is probably a good chance fear over monetary considerations is, too. The opposite interpretation, then, would appear to be just as straightforward, but it’s often complicated by the…

201712.27
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Rising ‘Dollar’ Re-Rises? Part 1, Mexico Ain’t Suffering NAFTA

One of Candidate Trump’s biggest priorities was to renegotiate NAFTA. Seen as an accelerator for harm not just inside of the nation’s rust belt, the incoming administration made it a top priority. Blaming the trade deal for the loss of 700k manufacturing jobs, Robert Lighthizer, the US’s top trade official for the renegotiation process, said…

201712.19
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Sick of ‘Dollars’, But What Else Is There?

If China wishes to ever throw off the shackles of the eurodollar system, and they do, to eventually go out on its own in an RMB dominated world there is a lot to cleanup long before that’s ever an attainable goal. To start with, we don’t know near enough about what’s going on inside that…

201712.18
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Chinese Really Are Not Tightening, Though They Would Be Thrilled If You Thought That

Why would any central bank try to disguise the fact that it is being highly accommodative in its own money markets? That would be a strange place to start, made all the more so by the further observation the same central bank is perfectly happy if you thought it was doing the opposite. Cryptic introduction…

201712.14
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Chinese Are Not Tightening, Though They Would Be Thrilled If You Thought That

The PBOC has two seemingly competing objectives that in reality are one and the same. Overnight, China’s central bank raised two of its money rates. The rate it charges mostly the biggest banks for access to the Medium-term Lending Facility (MLF) was increased by 5 bps to 3.25%. In addition, its reverse repo interest settings…

201712.04
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Three Years Ago QE, Last Year It Was China, Now It’s Taxes

China’s National Bureau of Statistics reported last week that the official manufacturing PMI for that country rose from 51.6 in October to 51.8 in November. Since “analysts” were expecting 51.4 (Reuters poll of Economists) it was taken as a positive sign. The same was largely true for the official non-manufacturing PMI, rising like its counterpart…

201712.04
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Just When You’ve Thought You’ve Seen It All

I could understand it if its track record was spotty, or partially mixed. But the level of denial runs deep and wide with the yield curve. There is a growing chorus of nonsense, really, which is attempting to spin the flattening as some kind of benign technical rotation that through illogical convolution equals the opposite…

201711.10
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Not The Usual Hollow Words

The Communist Chinese government views banking as a core industry, the securities business a core concept of banking. Their domestic sector has therefore been given preference and protection despite market reforms adopted elsewhere in China’s economy. Foreign bank presence has been ostensibly nothing, a fact that the government I believe wanted as a measure of…

201711.09
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The Inflation of China’s Condition

One day after the China’s government reported disappointing but consistent trade figures, that country’s National Bureau of Statistics published inflation estimates that are being branded at least on this side of the Pacific as some degree of “hot.” As is usually the case, the characterization is wildly off. China is no closer now to an…

201711.06
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Maybe Hong Kong Matters To Someone In Particular

Hong Kong stock trading opened deep in the red last night, the Hang Seng share index falling by as much as 1.6% before rallying. We’ve seen this behavior before, notably in 2015 and early 2016. Hong Kong is supposed to be an island of stability amidst stalwart attempts near the city to mimic its results…