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  • Increasing SDR Issuance...

    In This Issue..

    * Fed confuses markets, risk assets get sold...
    * SNB intervenes to stop franc's rise
    * ECB issues 12-month liquidity...
    * Bernanke to get grilled?

    Good day... And a Tub Thumpin' Thursday to you! Yes, I know the currencies and commodities got whipsawed yesterday, and my Cardinals got spanked, but that's no reason for us to not enjoy a Tub Thumpin' Thursday! Every day is a gift, and it has nothing to do with stocks, bonds, currencies, and commodities!

    OK... Not that I try to be philosophical, sometimes it just comes out that way! Besides, you don't want to think that I'm just a smart *** all the time! HAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Well, as I said in the open, the currencies and commodities got whipsawed yesterday, and the culprit was the FOMC minutes... You see, the Fed Reserve met to discuss rates, and other items. And what they said just blew away the bond vigilantes, and really ticked off the Hawks, but in the end, what they said, was really that things will remain status quo......
  • More Wild Swings!

    In This Issue..

    * Euro goes back and forth over 1.43...
    * Eurozone unemployment rises to 9.2%
    * Australia's GDP surprises!
    * Is it protectionism?

    Good day... And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! I'm draggin' the line today, as I was helping my oldest son, Andrew, with things in his brand, spankin' new house, last night. Congrats to Andrew, for finding a great bargain, with a low, fixed, interest rate!

    OK... Whew! What a day in the currencies yesterday! Another day, and another day of wild swings.. Volatility is the name of the game these days... Watching, for instance, the euro trade down to 1.4220, and then up to 1.4320 and not just on a one-way ticket! Oh No! this is a bounce here a bounce there... But just like it was going from 1.41 to 1.42, it took a few times over the 1.42 figure before it finally stuck, and headed to 1.43... All the other currencies followed in the swings, as usual......
  • Carry trades unwind...

    In This Issue..

    * Carry trades unwind...
    * Euro zone GDP falls...
    * Will TIC flows be enough??
    * Aussie dollar predicted to outperform...

    Good day...Chuck handed me the Pfennig this morning, as I took an early flight home yesterday and he got back to St. Louis much later than I did. The Las Vegas Money Show went well, as Chuck packed the presentation rooms with investors looking to learn more about investing in Gold and currencies. Attendance seemed like it was down a bit, but we stayed busy at the booth with investors looking for diversification. We also got to see a number of 'old friends' who stopped by the booth to say hi. All in all it was a good three days, but as always, it is good to get home and back into the routine.

    The currency markets fell back into their established routine also, as fear drove investors out of riskier assets and back into the US$. We saw a general reversal of the carry trade, with the Japanese yen the only major currency which appreciated vs. the US$. As Chuck pointed out last week, investors feeling more confident about the global economy, dusted off their carry trades which had made them good money over the past few years. But traders are still a bit skittish, and move back out of these leveraged trades at the first sign of trouble in the global economy....
  • Awful Data!

    In This Issue..

    * Weber opens Pandora's Box...
    * A record low for Capacity Utilization!
    * Do I hear a Chicken?
    * China's economy grows 6.1%

    Good day... And a Thunderin' Thursday to you! The 'Day After' Tax Day... It still hurts! And to think, one of these days, I'll be paying even more, thanks to the direction of our country... And you will be too! There's no two ways about it, the Deficit in funding in Washington D.C. which will be a result of all the spending, is going to require greater revenue... Where does the Gov't get the revenue? From taxes... Of course if it wasn't a debtor nation, it would not have to pay out the large sums of interest on the Treasuries it issues... But, that... Is a discussion for another day.

    The currencies saw more dollar strength yesterday, but it wasn't a result of anything the dollar had going for it... In fact, the results of the data yesterday was all dollar negative... No, this time it came from the Eurozone. Right about the time I was hitting the send button yesterday, European Central Bank (ECB) minister, Axel Weber Opened Pandora's Box of questions regarding future direction of the ECB... Let's go to the tape!...
  • The waiting game...

    In This Issue..

    * Waiting on G20 and the ECB...
    * US home prices plunge...
    * What will come from G20...
    * ECB to cut rates, but no quantitative easing...

    Good day... The markets will play a waiting game today, and I expect the currencies to trade in a pretty flat range. The focus will be on the G20 which starts tomorrow, and the ECB announcement which will also be released tomorrow. So today I will share my views on both of these topics, but first I will report on what occurred yesterday and overnight in the currency markets.

    The dollar climbed yesterday morning as data released showed US home prices plunged at a record pace and consumer confidence continues to bottom. US home prices fell nearly 19% in January according to the S&P Case Shiller index. This was even worse than economists had predicted, and December's numbers were revised down....
  • UK data boosts the dollar...

    In This Issue..

    * UK data boosts the dollar...
    * US GDP falls further...
    * Norway cuts rates...
    * Big wins by MIZZOU and BLUES...

    Good day... I want to start this mornings Pfennig with a big congratulations to the MIZZOU Tigers who pulled off what most believed was an unlikely win over Memphis last night. What a game! They move on to the Elite Eight to play powerhouse UCONN on Saturday.

    The currency markets weren't as exciting as the basketball games yesterday, as the dollar held in a fairly tight range. The big move came in early morning trading as a report was released in the UK showing their economy's contraction was worse than previously thought. This news was GDP in the UK fell 1.6% in the 4th quarter of 2008 vs. the previous quarter. And the outlook presented by the Bank of England is not rosy. BOE Chief Economist Spencer Dale said this morning that the British economy's short term prospects are 'bleak'. Chuck has brought up the comparison between the UK and US economies several times, as the UK economy looks like mirror image (albeit smaller) of the US. The UK economy has been slightly ahead of the US in the race toward economic meltdown. Unfortunately the US Fed seems to be shadowing every move by the UK, cutting rates to near zero and then using 'quantitative easing' to force them down even further....
  • Groundhog Day 2009

    * The dollar remains strong... * GDP sinks to -3.8% * Central Bank rate meeting week... * Gold outperforms just about everything! ** Groundhog Day 2009 Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! It's Ground hog Day (what a great movie!) today... And what a Super Bowl Game last night! WOW! Almost as exciting as the year our Rams won and the tackle on the last play of the game for a touchdown, was made on the one yard line... Seems like eons ago, that the Rams won... Well, front and center this morning, the euro and other currencies are still reeling from that shot to their mid section by George Soros at the World Economic Forum, in Davos Switzerland. The dollar has flexed its muscles a bit more and taken the euro to just above 1.27... Not that euro holders want to hear this, but this IS what I was talking about all last month with the talk of an Obama bounce. The stock market hasn't caught on yet though......
  • Risk Aversion Reigns Supreme!

    * Currencies under dollar pressure * How strong can yen get? * TARP... * ECB rate questions... ** Risk Aversion Reigns Supreme! Good day... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! I'm draggin' the line this morning, but will get through this with my usual you know what and vinegar! The euro is trading at a one month low this morning, and the high yielders are getting stepped on again after enjoying a month a risk taking in the sun. That about explains everything, so I'll go the Big Finish now... Gotcha! Let's see what else is up on this cold and blustery Terrific Tuesday... So... It looks as though Risk Aversion is reigning supreme once again. I just don't buy into the dollar being the "safe haven" with all that's going on here. But, that's the way it is, and I can't change it. On a side bar, I used to have a customer that was convinced that I could move the markets with the Pfennig... I always thanked him for his complimentary remarks, but would hang up and have a chuckle, as IF I could change the way things are with my simple, humble little newsletter!...
  • GDP Goes Negative...

    * Currency rally fizzles out... * Bank of Japan cuts rates... * Tracking David Walker... * A major shift change on spending... ** GDP Goes Negative... Good day... And a Happy Friday to one and all! A Happy Halloween Friday to boot! Boy, to be a kid again, and have what is forecast as a 70 degree day on a Friday for Halloween! We've been so busy at the Butler house that we didn't even decorate our front yard with Halloween stuff this year. UGH! But, that's OK, I guess, Alex is older now, and little Delaney Grace would probably freak out with the ghost that would fly across the front of our house, etc. Well... The fog that was lifted from the markets came back with a vengeance yesterday, and once again it was the deep, dark, dangerous U.S. economy leading the charge. 3rd QTR GDP printed yesterday and even though it was forecast to be negative, when it actually printed negative, the trading theme returned. 3rd QTR GDP goes negative (and if you throw in inflation for good measure growth was REALLY negative!) and the dollar rallies... It's the trading theme of the decade! (Ok, I exaggerate a bit there, as it has only been in place for 3 months now!)...
  • Senate Passes The Bailout Package!

    * Euro falls to 1-year low.... * Bailing out foreign investors? * O'Neill has a better plan... * ISM collapses! But the dollar rallies... ** Senate Passes The Bailout Package! Good day... And a Tub Thumpin' Thursday to you! Rocktober started off with a bang for the dollar, as the green/peachback continued to gain VS the euro and other currencies, pushing the euro to a one-year low VS the dollar. We all sat here and shook our heads in disbelief yesterday, as the U.S. ISM Index (manufacturing) collapsed in September, but the dollar rallied anyway. The ISM Index fell from 49 to 43.5, the lowest print since Rocktober 2001, which happened to be near the end of the 2001 recession and right after the awful period following 9/11. So... To me... This really paints the recession picture clear and bright for all to see... So, why did the dollar rally with this albatross around its neck?...
  • More Dollar Strength!

    * Trichet's words sink the euro rally... * A New Conspiracy theory... * Japanese yen continues to rally! * An Announcement... ** More Dollar Strength! Good day... And a Happy Friday to one and all! It has not started out as a Fantastico Friday, just a Fun Friday... No wait! Just because the dollar is running around the end with the ball, and the currencies can't catch up with the greenback, is no reason to allow it to filter through to my feelings about each and every day! That's right! I'm feeling like there's a ton of weight on my shoulders right now, with this dollar strength, and everyone jumping ship... But, I promised myself over a year ago that if I was able to fight cancer and come out on top, that I would celebrate each day... And that's what I try to do! So... I'll make it a Fantastico Friday after all! The euro's two-day rally VS the dollar got stuffed in a box and shipped to sea yesterday. The single unit looked as though it would add to the rally that took it above 1.45 but as I was signing off yesterday the euro was giving back its gains VS the dollar... And soon, it would give back more than the two-day rally's gains....
  • A Big Data Week!

    * Some healing in the currencies... * U of Mich. Confidence falls... * Unloading Treasuries? * Turning the tables in N.Z.?...
  • Markets May be Saving it up for Today...

    * Consumption rose...* Inflation fell... * Swedish surplus... * Euro setting the tone......