201804.17 6

China’s Monetary Shell Game

Throughout much of last year, we were told repeatedly that the PBOC was tightening monetary policy. China’s central bank had raised its reverse repo rate twice early on, and then once more last December (and would do so again just last month). These moves coincided with Federal Reserve “rate hikes”, seemingly in line with the…

201804.12 11

Completely Full of It

In June 2008, ICAP actually launched a US-based alternative to LIBOR. It ended up as nothing more than one very minor footnote lost in a sea of more pressing problems and events. Still, that they even tried is somewhat significant and relevant to today. Before the whole cheating scandal came out, there were questions surrounding…

201803.16
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COT Blue: A Decade of Weird

On July 15, 2008, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke sat in front of Congress for the second of his required Humphrey-Hawkins reports for that year. The original act meant for these to be more than bland economic obfuscation, where the original Full Employment and Balanced Growth Act of 1978 demanded monetary targets. The Fed stopped…

201802.28
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The Only Thing That Matters (Europe)

Effective June 10, 2014, the European Central Bank cut the interest rate it paid on its deposit account to less than zero. That instrument in forming the floor for what is a money market corridor in European policy, it was the world’s first major NIRP experiment. Europe’s economy had by GDP been growing again for…

201802.15
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Escalation(s)

This is the Year of the Dog, or it will be starting tomorrow across Asia. Tonight marks the opening of celebrations for China’s Spring Festival Golden Week. These weeklong breaks in Chinese contributions to the global system have over the past few years rarely been so uneventful. Their absence has been noted both good and…

201802.12
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Leverage In Argentina Is More Than Leverage And Argentina

China’s shock “devaluation” was not the only one in 2015. It was the currency disruption that most people remember, even if years later they’re not sure exactly why. Paying attention to CNY makes sense, requiring no further explanation for why it might be given focus even from the otherwise unaware. In December 2015, while global…

201801.05
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What’s Missing In Europe Is What’s Missing Everywhere

American central bankers and economists aren’t alone in their Phillips Curve nightmare. They are joined by others practically everywhere else around the world. In Europe, for example, the unemployment rate there continues to fall while inflation keeps on misbehaving in its meandering. Unlike the US, however, the Europeans don’t have the luxury of burying millions…

201709.20
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Little Behind CNY

The framing is a bit clumsy, but the latest data in favor of the artificial CNY surge comes to us from Bloomberg. The mainstream views currency flows as, well, flows of currency. That’s what makes their description so maladroit, and it can often lead to serious confusion. A little translation into the wholesale eurodollar reality,…

201709.19
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PBOC RMB Restraint Derives From Experience Plus ‘Dollar’ Constraint

Given that today started with a review of the “dollar” globally as represented by TIC figures and how that is playing into China’s circumstances, it would only be fitting to end it with a more complete examination of those. We know that the eurodollar system is constraining Chinese monetary conditions, but all through this year…

201709.08
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Why So Much Inventory?

Liquidity and more so liquidity preferences are vastly misunderstood for a whole host of reasons. A lot of it has to do with the dominant strains of Economics battling each other (saltwater vs. freshwater) over which statistical model fails less frequently. In shifting to mathematics and statistics, something great has been lost. Economists don’t understand…