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  • High Yielders Rally...

    In This Issue..

    * Is it Game On for Carry Trades again?
    * A Trade-Free Zone for Southeast Asia!
    * 10-year yield rise will shut down the mortgage rally...
    * A min-rally for the euro this morning...

    Good day... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! I'm already draggin' the line today on the 2nd day back from vacation! UGH! The High Yielders are back to work this week, as the currencies of Australia, South Africa, and Brazil are attempting a come-back VS the dollar. This and more, as we head into the last Tuesday of 2009...

    Well... The last Monday of 2009, was uneventful with the currencies remaining in Tupperware ranges (tight that is!), and with little to show in the way of any measurable appreciation VS the dollar. There was no sign of the U.S. Corporations repatriating their profits yesterday as was rumored... Of course they still have today, tomorrow and Thursday to do so...

    ...
  • The Markets Ignore Bernanke...

    In This Issue..

    * The dollar continues to get bought...
    * German Investor Confidence weakens...
    * The Carry Trade shifts to Japan again...
    * More deficit spending...

    Good day... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! Not a Terrific Tuesday for the non-dollar currencies though, as the overnight markets have marked them down once again, and favored the dollar... More on that in a minute... I got a chance to meet up with some old friends and co-workers last night, at a holiday party... I had to leave early though, my leg couldn't stand that long... UGH!

    OK... The daily noise, has the bias to buy going toward the dollar this morning... For some unknown reason, and I emphasize this here... The markets are not listening to Big Ben Bernanke, when he says that current near zero interest rates will remain for 'some time to come'... You see, the markets are under the impression that he's giving us a head fake, and will raise rates aggressively very soon, for the data that has printed recently is of the "need to raise interest rates before inflation takes the economy hostage" kind of stuff......
  • Good news for housing is bad news for the dollar...

    In This Issue..

    * Home sales increase most in eight years...
    * Euro boosted by confidence...
    * Geitner sells the Chinese...
    * Carry trades back in vogue...

    The dollar lost more ground on Monday, but the reasons were different than those that caused last week's slow decline. Currency traders sold the dollar after a report showed sales of new homes rose the most in eight years. New-home sales in the US climbed 11% last month to a 384,000 annual pace. This was substantially higher than economists had forecast, and the most since November. The report also showed the number of houses on the market dropped to the lowest level in more than a decade. The housing numbers seem to confirm that the housing market may be approaching a bottom, but housing prices continue to fall, and more data is needed before I'm convinced the worst is over. Many of these homes have been sold to first time homebuyers taking advantage of government programs; and if unemployment continues to climb, housing sales are not likely to rise quickly....
  • A Horrific Jobs Report!

    * 651K jobs lost in Feb... * Dec. and Jan Job losses revised up... * Talking Norway, Canada, Australia... * Brazil stealthlike for 3 months... ** A Horrific Jobs Report! Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! A wonderful weekend here in St. Louis, a taste of spring was in the air. I got to spend some time with some of my closest friends on Friday night, a good time was had by all! Well... Our Fantastico Friday was interrupted by that horrific Jobs Jamboree number that printed Friday morning... 651K jobs were lost in February, which let me remind you is a couple of days shorter than other months. So, it could have been worse! Hard to believe that could be the case, but it's true. The unemployment rate rose to 8.1%, from 7.6% in January. The jobless rate is the highest since 1983. The economy has now shed 4.4 million jobs since the recession began in December 2007, with almost half of those losses occurring in the last three months alone....
  • Saying "NO" To Eastern Europe...

    * Dollar continues to rally... * John Taylor buys dollars... * Canada sees a deficit! * More bailout funding... ** Saying "NO" To Eastern Europe... Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! Welcome to March too! Here and a lot of the country saw March come in like a lion, which means it should go out like a lamb, right? Let's hope it begins turning in that direction before month-end! 9 days before I leave for Florida, the countdown begins! Well... The currencies continue to trade heavy under the pressure of the dollar, and the "flight to safety" in Treasuries... The euro has lost the 1.26 handle and continues to look weaker and weaker all the time. The latest move down came as a result of new that Eurozone leaders rejected a request for Eastern Europe aid... Here's the skinny on that......
  • A Jobs Disaster!

    * Retail Jobs are cut in December! * Dollar rallies on renewed Trading Theme... * Looking for the Obama bounce... * High yielders get sold... ** A Jobs Disaster! Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! A grand weekend for yours truly with time spent resting, watching football, Alex play basketball, dinner with friends, and finally a wonderful dinner with my kids as we celebrated my oldest son, Andrew's, birthday. Whew! I'm at work about an hour earlier than usual this morning, as I couldn't sleep, and just decided to get up and come in... UGH! OK... Well, the big news this morning, is that the Jobs Jamboree was just awful, but "not as bad as some forecast" and therefore the dollar rallied. OK, I'm shaking my head in disgust too, but that's what the headlines reported later in the day on Friday, as the reason for the dollar rally. But let's get to the meat of the Jobs report... First of all, jobs lost in December were -525K, which was bang on the forecasts. But here's the two things I found to be very scary in the report... First of all, November's awful print of -533K was revised downward to -584K (recall, I questioned a month ago if it would reach -600K on the revision)... And here's the really scary number... -67K Retail jobs were cut in December... That's right, December! The month when retailers are supposed to be on fire!...
  • A HUGE Currency Rally!

    * Another currency rally.... * SNB cuts another 50 BPS! * Budget Deficit continues to widen! * Treasury yields go south for the winter! ** A HUGE Currency Rally! Good day... And a Tub Thumpin' Thursday to you! It's been quite the rally this week in the currencies led by the euro, which is like old times, eh? The Big Dog on the porch finally gets to stretch its legs and chase the dollar down the street! It's been a long time since we've seen this go on for more than a day. Yes, we've seen one day spikes, and even two day rallies turn into false dawns, but this one has lasted about a week now. Ever since last Friday's awful Jobs Jamboree, the tide has turned, and the Trading Theme that has held the currencies in a full nelson since the end of July, could very well be on the way out the door. I said that about the Trading Theme earlier this week, so I just wanted to repeat that to emphasize the point!...
  • Maybe It's Time For A Change?

    * Currencies continue to rally... * More Stimulus... * Data shows more rot on the vine... * A Thanksgiving thought... **Maybe It's Time For A Change? Good day... And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! The day before Thanksgiving... Tonight is, historically, the biggest "going out" night for the younger crowd, as they all return home from college, etc. Not for yours truly though... A little reminder that Friday I will not be writing... Friday night, a large group of friends and family are starting the holiday season off with a gathering at the Butler House, before all heading to see the Trans Siberian Orchestra's Holiday Concert... I'm getting pumped up for that! OK... Another rally day in the currencies yesterday... One that wasn't as pronounced as Monday's 3-cent rally... But a rally just the same, and at one point, the euro was trading above 1.30... Hadn't seen that level in a while, so welcome back to the 1.30 level, Mr. euro... ...
  • The Day After...

    * I want change too! * Euro leads a currency rally! * Factory Orders plunge! * Carry Trades back on the table! ** The Day After... Good day... And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! The day after... The day after all the election ads ended... What a beautiful day it is! Well, in January we'll have a new president, one that had a call to "change"... I sure hope we can change... The problem is what I want changed hasn't been on any candidate's agenda... That's because, as the Big Boss Frank Trotter so eloquently said the other day when I complained about the lack of talk on this subject, "They can't get elected if they talk about that"... The "that" is simply the national debt, and how we'll deal with it as the baby boomers begin to draw on their entitlement programs... I think people now like to "live for today, and not worry about tomorrow" and that's a real shame. As I said a month or so ago... I'm going to have to sit down and write a letter to my sweetheart granddaughter, Delaney Grace, and apologize to her for leaving her generation with a debt load that requires a huge tax burden that her grand father didn't have, and a loss of freedoms, and life style, that her grand father had......
  • Rate Cut Week...

    * Mixed bag o' data... * Trading theme in place... * election tomorrow... * Consumer Spending collapses! ** Rate Cut Week... Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! Welcome to November! For almost 20 years, November was my least favorite month, cold gray days, dead looking trees, bad memories of the month, and all that... But I just don't get all involved in that stuff anymore, as my different outlook on life tells me that every day is a great day, and months just contain great days! OK... On Friday, we saw more and more of the same trading theme, and in the overnight markets last night, more and more of it again! And Carry Trades are back for the moment anyway, as stocks rebounded late in the week to end the month with a brighter outlook than they had earlier in the month. But, in my view from the cheap seats, this stock rebound is much like what they call in the markets, a dead cat bounce, (OK no animals were hurt here!) which means... That stocks are going nowhere, but bounces can still happen. I say that stocks are going nowhere, and I'm not even your last choice as a stock jockey... I just survey the economic horizon and see a deeper recession than we are currently experiencing, and a "spent" Consumer, which is going to lead to awful earnings for Corporations, and thus stocks not going anywhere......
  • The Trading Theme Remains In Place...

    * Heeee's Baaaaaacccckkkkk... * Carry Trade Depth... * RBA intervenes... * Oil weighs on the loonie... ** The Trading Theme Remains In Place... Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! It's been a long time, now I'm coming back home, I've been away now, oh how, I've been alone... Two weeks gone by the wayside! This Friday is Halloween! WOW! Where did the month go? Airports, hotels, and taxi cabs, that's where! But, I did it... The Currency Tour is finished... Time well spent I might add, but very taxing on me... Of course, my beautiful bride tells me if I were in better shape, it wouldn't be so taxing! Well... As I look at the currency screens this morning, I see that nothing has changed... The Trading theme I left you with is still in place, as the more deeper, darker, dangerous outlook for the U.S. becomes, the more the dollar gets bought... Things look better, and the dollar will get sold... The dollar has become the new Japanese yen!...
  • Deleveraging pushes the US$ up...

    * Deleveraging continues to push $ higher... * Pound Sterling tumbles... * Canada cuts rates... * Argentina spoils appetite for emerging markets... ** Deleveraging pushes the US$ up... Good day... Wow, another unbelievable day/night in the currency markets. The dollar continued to run up vs. most of the currencies yesterday and last night as investors brought money back into the US. We continue to get calls from WorldMarket investors asking us what was pushing this dollar up, as all of the data seems to be negative for the US$. The only explanation which seems to make sense is the global deleveraging of investors. Here is as good an explanation as I can give. Over the past several years money was extremely cheap and investors took advantage of these cheap loans. Hedge funds, corporate investors, and even some individuals borrowed funds and placed them into higher yielding investments to earn the 'carry'. This occurred not only in the currency markets, but across the entire spectrum of asset classes. These investors were rewarded with incremental yields over 'cash' investors, and banks were more than willing to lend, so the amount of leverage continued to increase to absolutely absurd levels. Everything was fine until the housing market here in the US turned and losses started to show up on the books of some investors....
  • Coordinated Rate Cuts!

    * Yen trades to 98! * Carry Trades unwinding hurt high yielders... * Gold rallies back to $900! * Central Bank rate cuts.... ** Coordinated Rate Cuts! Good day... And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! Well... There's a ton of stuff to talk about today, one of which is the amazing run that Japanese yen has had in the past month, but particularly the last week! No need to sneak a peak at the currency round-up, Japanese yen is trading 98.80! WOW! I could be acting like a contortionist and trying to slap myself on the back, but that would unprofessional... And besides, the rest of the currencies are taking shots to the mid-section. Anyway... Blow the horn, the Carry Trade (for yen) is dead, may it rest in peace! OK... The currencies tried like all get out yesterday to rally VS the dollar, the euro did end the day 1% higher on the day, which after the bloodshed of the past month, I'll take that any old time! I would love to go back to 2005 (not really, but for this conversation's sake I will) and pull out some old Pfennigs where I talked about all the naysayers talking about a break up of the euro... We had the NO votes from France and Denmark on accepting the European Union's (EU) Constitution, we had riots in the streets of France, we had rising interest rates in the U.S. and dozens and dozens of naysayers called out the euro and said it would collapse under the weight. I said then, and I'll say now... HOGWASH!...
  • The Deed Is Done...

    * Adding $700 Billion to our debt... * U.S. loses 159K jobs in September! * Dollar rallies to 13-month high VS euro * Ding Dong the Carry Trade is Dead... ** The Deed Is Done... Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! The deed is done... The House, which had previously voted down the Bailout Package, decided to go ahead and put the country in debt by another $700 Billion... Yes, I know it the payouts will be in installments, but in my mind it was in one swoop that $700 Billion was added to our debt... And guess what? The dollar rallied on the news! More on the Bailout Package in a minute... The other thing happened on Friday was the awful Job Jamboree in which 159K jobs were reported lost by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) during September. The job losses were all over the place led by job losses in Manufacturing. And guess what? The dollar rallied on the news!...
  • King Henry Was Wrong Again!

    * Bailout package is voted down! * Biggest one day point drop for the DOW! * Dollar rallies hard... * Carry trades unwind... Again! ** King Henry Was Wrong Again! Good day... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! Well... Guess who was wrong AGAIN! That's right, King Henry Paulson, he of the U.S. Treasury Sec. throne... He told the world on Friday, that the bailout package was a "done deal"... And he told us again on Sunday that it was a "done deal"... The markets rejoiced, the stock jockeys danced in the streets, the karma flowed and all the stars were in alignment... And then... A (not so) funny thing happened on the way to the forum... King Henry's men revolted, and the bailout package did NOT have the votes to pass it, and the "done deal" was "undone"! Once again this man has led investors down the wrong path. I've documented the wrong statements by this man in the past year, and still, investors hang on every word by King Henry... When will they ever learn? When, will, they, ev-er learn?...