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  • Germany Calls The Shots.

    In This Issue.

    * Bias to hold dollars remained yesterday.

    * Eurozone Summit kicks off today.

    * TIC's data is strangely bad!

    * Inflation is here.

    ...
  • US$ stuck in a rut...

    In This Issue..

    * US$ stuck in a rut...
    * Australia is rising star...
    * BOE keeps rates on hold...
    * Frank reflects on Olympic boycott...

    Good day, and welcome to Friday!  The dollar kept within the fairly tight range it has established over the past few weeks.  The dollar index has remained between 81 and 82 for the past 15 days, after jumping higher on the Greek financial crisis.  Currency traders are uncertain of where the global economy is heading, and seem to be taking a 'wait and see' approach.  Eventually a clear picture will start to emerge, but for now, the currency markets are stuck in a rut.

    The weekly jobs data released yesterday morning didn't give investors much to go on.  The numbers came in slightly higher than expected, surprising many who thought the improvement we saw in the monthly numbers at the end of last week would carry over to the weekly report.  But it still looks like any improvement in the labor picture here in the US will be slow to come, and pretty sporadic.  The Labor Department blamed the Easter holiday for skewing the numbers, saying the two weeks around the Holiday weekend are traditionally volatile making it difficult to discern an underlying trend.  But the less volatile 4 week moving average of claims, a less volatile measure, also increased to 450,250 last week from 448,000.

    ...
  • Germany's Merkel gets her way...

    In This Issue..

    * Germany's Merkel gets her way...
    * Confidence in the US ebbs lower...
    * China to stick to renminbi policy...
    * Gold stops sliding...

    Good day, we had another strong day for the dollar yesterday, with the greenback gaining against all of the majors. But overnight, the Asians and then the Europeans sold the dollar and moved money back into the currencies. So after another rollercoaster ride, we are basically right back where we were at this time yesterday morning. These volatile markets are likely to continue, as investors try to figure out if the global economy will recover or if we will slide back into recession. With all of this uncertainty, you would think investors would be moving into 'hard assets': Gold and Silver. But the markets for these two precious metals have been surprisingly quiet this year. More on the metals a bit later, first I will try to figure out these currency markets....
  • Gold Soars To Another All-Time High!

    In This Issue..

    * $1,055 for Gold!
    * Global recovery prospects fuel run on the dollar...
    * Trichet to defend the dollar today?
    * Central Banks are diversifying...

    Good day... And a Thunderin' Thursday to you! It's raining here in St. Louis, so, it must be Thursday! It's a big night for yours truly, but I'll talk about that at the end... We've got some big moves going on in the currencies and metals, so we had better get to it, and save the chit-chat for later, eh? But first, today is the funding deadline on our latest BRIC MarketSafe CD... We'll have one more in November and then that's it!

    OK, front and center this morning, Gold has soared to another all-time high! When I turned on the screen this morning, Gold was flashing a great big $1,055 figure... WOW! But wait! OK, now that sounded like an infomercial... But wait! If you act now, you can get double the Ginsu knives! HA! OK, getting back to the original, but wait... Gold and Silver for that matter, aren't the only risk assets moving higher this morning... All 16 of the countries that are deemed to be the biggest U.S. trading partners, have currencies that are taking liberties VS the dollar this morning......
  • Dollar falls as US consumer confidence increases...

    In This Issue..

    * Dollar falls as US consumers become more positive...
    * GDP to be reported this morning...
    * European confidence increases...
    * Mexican peso recovers...

    Good day... Hopefully this will reach everyone today. We have been having some computer problems causing some major delays in the delivery of your Pfennig. As Chuck always says, if you need your Pfennig, just go to www.dailypfennig.com where it is posted each morning as soon as I hit the send button. For those of you who feel the need, the website also has an archive, so you can all read what I had to say yesterday. But enough about our email problems, you all want to know what is happening in the markets.

    The dollar began the day trading in a fairly tight range, but a fairly large jump in US consumer confidence sent the US$ tumbling. Yes, the old 'opposite' trading pattern has begun again. When we have good news regarding the US and global economies, the US$ gets sold. But when the data is bad, the dollar is purchased as a safe haven. Yesterday both pieces of data released in the US were more positive than most economists expected, so the dollar gave back some of its recent 'safe haven' gains....
  • US$ benefits from the swine flu...

    In This Issue..

    * Swine flu causes rush to US$...
    * The US$ wins no matter what??
    * US Treasury starts a busy week...
    * Chinese Renminbi moves back up..

    Good day... And welcome to another week. Chuck headed off to Bermuda on Saturday, so you are all stuck with me for the whole week. Both he and Frank will be giving presentations at the Sovereign Society's Total Wealth Symposium; Frank representing EverBank and Chuck representing his paid newsletter, Currency Capitalist (www.worldcurrencywatch.com). Frank and Chuck probably log more miles than anyone else in the company, and while it may sound like fun to travel to all of the exotic locals, travel is tough. And with the big news over the weekend, airplanes and airports are the last place I would want to be right now....
  • Bad news for GM and Chrysler rallies the US$...

    In This Issue..

    * Bad news for car makers rallies the US$...
    * Yen comes back strong...
    * Singapore to devalue?...
    * German Chancellor Merkel gives warning...

    Good day... And good Monday morning to all of you. I can't believe March is nearly over, it seems as though it just started. March will end up being a pretty good month for the currency markets, as investors exited the safety of US treasuries and started moving funds back into higher yielding assets. But the markets continue to be volatile, and news released on Friday and over the weekend has sent these investors rushing back to the safe haven of the US dollar.

    The Japanese Yen and US dollar benefited after a US Government official said Friday that bankruptcy may be the best option for GM and Chrysler. The dollar continued to gain strength this morning after US Treasury Secretary Geithner warned yesterday that some financial institutions will need 'large amounts' of aid. When the Treasury Secretary says large amounts, you know it is going to be billions or trillions! Geithner was making the rounds of Sunday morning talk shows to try and justify the money already spent and prepare the taxpayers for another request of funds....
  • Geithner tanks the dollar, but then pushes it back up...

    In This Issue..

    * Geithner sends the dollar on a thrill ride...
    * A failed UK gilt auction...
    * China set to recover first...
    * AUD and NZD rally again...

    Good day... The currency markets took back what little strength the dollar mustered over the past two days with the Euro moving back above popping back above 1.36 and the Australian dollar moving back up over .70. The cause for this dollar weakness? Data released in the US yesterday was surprisingly strong again, so investors dumped the 'safe haven' holdings of Treasuries and moved money back into higher yielding investments.

    At one point yesterday the dollar index dropped precipitously (more than 1.5% in less than 10 minutes), and then bounced back up within a half hour. Jennifer McLean, who takes care of our currency trading while Chuck is away from the desk, said the sudden moves were due to Treasury Secretary Geithner's comments. Apparently Geithner was asked about China's call for a new international reserve currency yesterday at a NY event. He said that while he hadn't read the proposal, he understood it as a plan 'designed to increase the use of the IMF's special drawing rights. And we're actually quite open to that.' After hearing those words, currency traders immediately starting selling off the dollar. After all, if the Treasury Secretary of the US says the administration is open to a new international reserve currency, why do you want to hold dollars? I guess Geithner got wind of what he had done to the currency markets pretty quickly (the power of Blackberries!) and 15 minutes later he clarified his comments to say the US dollar should remain as the world's reserve currency....
  • Bank Losses Mount... Globally...

    * The dollar continues to rally... * Loan ratios figure big now... * Bank nationalization returns to Germany... * Gold pushes the envelope further... ** Bank Losses Mount... Globally... Good day... And while I hope it's a Wonderful Wednesday to you, I have sad and shocking news for us at EverBank. Yesterday, we were shocked to learn that a colleague and friend, John Kimsey has passed unexpectedly. Thoughts and prayers are with the family. John had joined the World Markets desk in November of last year, after a career in our Mortgage Division, and made an immediate impact with his personality, and his love of his family. His laugh, and smile were contagious, and will be missed. I have no experience in dealing with the loss of a colleague, so I'll just leave it there, and move on. This will be short this morning, as I'm just not really in the mood to be in a normal writing mood....
  • Gold As An Inflation Fighter!

    * BOE to cut rates today... * ECB will wait to cut for now... * Black clouds forming for India? * German factory Orders plunge! ** Gold As An Inflation Fighter! Good day... And a Tub Thumpin' Thursday to you! Day One at the Orlando World Money Show (WMS) went well. My room for the presentation was packed! It was standing room only, and the good part was the fact that there were only about 30 Pfennig readers in the crowd. I say that not because I have something against Pfennig readers, oh Lord, they are dear readers! The reason I say that is I like to know how many of the non-readers I can convert to Pfennig readers!...
  • Inauguration Day 2009...

    * Rogers and Roach... * Dollar gaps higher! * Ireland's problems... * Bad data... ** Inauguration Day 2009... Good day... Well... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! I got to enjoy a nice restful 3-day weekend. I realize not everyone got yesterday off, so I won't carry on about it. Can you believe it? The St. Louis Cardinals Football Team A.K.A. The Big Red, no wait, Chuck, they left town 20 years ago... OK, the Arizona Cardinals are going to the Super Bowl? When they were here, I never thought I would live to see the day... Front and Center this morning, I have two quotes from people I truly respect... first from Jimmy Rogers... second from Stephen Roach... If I were you, I would be worried about the U.S. dollar,' said Rogers, 66, in a speech at the Asia Financial Forum in Hong Kong today. 'The Americans are printing U.S. dollars. The Americans are going to do whatever they can to revive their economy, even if it means destroying the U.S. dollar.'...
  • Paulson throws the markets a curve...

    * Paulson throws the markets a curve... * Goldman says to buy the yen... * RBA intervenes to protect the AUD$... * China provides support to commodities... ** Paulson throws the markets a curve... Good day... Chuck is out today, so I get the opportunity to share some of my thoughts on the markets. As many of you know, I spent most of last week in Washington DC giving presentations at the Money Show. On the way to the hotel, the cab driver who had noticed my EverBank luggage tag asked if I was a banker. He said he had seen a lot of us lately. I guess I was one of the few bankers flying into Washington DC who wasn't heading over to the Treasury Dept. to get some of the cheap money they are passing out. I had a great trip to Washington and really enjoyed the opportunity to spread the word about EverBank and the protection that portfolio diversification provides. I don't think Treasury Secretary Paulson is having as good a time as I did in the nation's capital. When he came down from NY a couple years ago to take over the Treasury, he was Wall Street's best paid CEO and looked to cap his career with a high-profile sojourn in public service. But his credibility has really taken a hit over the past year, and his update before congress yesterday didn't quite go as everyone expected. Chuck left me the following to share with readers this morning....
  • Dollar range bound...

    * Dollar range bound... * German confidence falls... * Aussie and NZD continue to slide... * US to maintain pressure on Chinese... ** Dollar range bound... Good day... Chuck had a rough night, so he decided to stay home and try to get some rest. The Pfennig will be pretty short this morning, as I want to try and get it out as close to the regular time as possible. The currency markets were fairly calm yesterday, with the dollar staying in a pretty tight range before rallying some in early trading this morning. The Euro has lost some ground in European trading as German business and consumer confidence fell more than economists forecast. The Ifo institute's business climate index dropped to a three year low in July and consumer sentiment slumped to the lowest level in five years. Some currency traders pointed to these latest reports as further proof Europe is slipping into recession and that the ECB will need to cut rates before year end. It is obvious by now that the economies of Europe are weakening, and growth will not be able to match last years numbers. But I still believe Trichet and the other voting members of the ECB will continue their hawkish bias, and I don't expect any interest rate moves until sometime next year. This should keep the Euro from falling dramatically away from these current levels....
  • Calling Out The Fed...

    * TIC's look funny... * Germany's ZEW is weaker... * A note from the Washington Post! * Tons of data today... **Calling Out The Fed... Good day... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! Well... Someone from the Washington Post is a Pfennig Reader (I think!), as there was a great article in the paper calling out the Fed on their "rate hike" rhetoric... I'll give you snippets of that, and a snippet from my friend, the Mogambo Guru, along with the usual currency talk, on this Terrific Tuesday... Ready, set, let's go! Front and Center this morning is the dollar getting sold all day yesterday, as the euro recovered all the way to 1.5515 in the overnight markets. Unfortunately, the single unit was stopped in its rally tracks by an awful printing of German Investor Confidence, as measured by the think tank ZEW... German Investor Confidence dropped to the lowest level in 15 years this month, as rising inflation is eating away at the economy. I don't expect this report to put too much a dent in the single unit's performance today, but for now it has slipped back below 1.55......