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Stitch Fix, Target And 3 Stocks To Watch Heading Into Tuesday

With U.S. stock futures trading lower this morning on Tuesday, some of the stocks that may grab investor focus today are as follows: Wall Street expects Target Corporation (NYSE: TGT) to report quarterly earnings at $2.41 per share on revenue of $31.83 billion before the opening bell, according to data from Benzinga Pro. Target shares rose 1.3% to $152.50 in after-hours trading. AeroVironment, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVAV) reported better-than-expected results for its fourth ...Full story available on Benzinga.com.....»»

Category: earningsSource: benzinga19 min. ago Related News

Crypto Liquidations Cross $550M as Bitcoin Remains Volatile Ahead of Historic Highs

Memecoin futures took on nearly $90 million in liquidations as prices corrected after a massive rally in the past week......»»

Category: forexSource: coindesk2 hr. 3 min. ago Related News

Stitch Fix, Target And 3 Stocks To Watch Heading Into Tuesday

With U.S. stock futures trading lower this morning on Tuesday, some of the stocks that may grab investor focus today are as follows: read more.....»»

Category: blogSource: benzinga2 hr. 4 min. ago Related News

New Jobs Week to Keep Bull Market Charging?

There will also be a healthy number of additional economic and earnings reports through the course of this week. Monday, March 4th, 2024Pre-market futures are flat-to-lower this morning, after a healthy week of trading that saw individual indices up from +1% to +3% over the last five days of trading. With this in mind, a lackluster start to a new week may just be awaiting to see which way the market winds are blowing, especially without any major economic news or earnings reports to reflect on. The Dow is -165 points at this hour, while the S&P 500 is -9 points and the Nasdaq is +2.In terms of economic news, this does promise to be a consequential week: it’s a new Jobs Week, where Wednesday’s private-sector payrolls from ADP ADP and JOLTS data from the Federal government joins Friday morning’s Employment Situation report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), with Weekly Jobless Claims between them. Last time around, there was a wide discrepancy between ADP and BLS numbers: 107K new jobs created in January versus 353K, respectively. We expect some revisions on both ends, while expectations are for between 150K job placements in February (ADP) and 210K on BLS.There will also be a healthy number of additional economic reports, such as Factory Orders, ISM Services, Wholesale Inventories, a new Beige Book, a revision to Q4 Productivity and U.S. trade Balance numbers. While none of these prints will be enough to move markets on their own, combined together — and with the various jobs reports out this week — we should get a nuanced take of the U.S. economy by the end of the week that we don’t have currently.We also have a perhaps surprising number of earnings reports expected this week, with retailers like Target TGT and Nordstrom JWN joining cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike CRWD and Chinese EV retailer NIO NIO all coming out with quarterly numbers — and that’s just for Tuesday. Beyond these, Broadcom AVGO and Costco COST bring out earnings results later this week. Overall, however, we’re just about to tie a bow on Q4 earnings season.In terms of “news” news this morning, JetBlue JBLU has announced the termination of its merger efforts with rival discount airline Spirit SAVE, which was not unexpected. In fact, the U.S. Department of Justice had already rejected the joining together of these two companies, and there was little belief among analysts in this space that anything was going to change in this regard. Also, Apple AAPL is reportedly being served with a $2 billion fine by a European commission related to reportedly unfair music streaming service practices.Questions or comments about this article and/or author? Click here>> Zacks Names "Single Best Pick to Double" From thousands of stocks, 5 Zacks experts each have chosen their favorite to skyrocket +100% or more in months to come. From those 5, Director of Research Sheraz Mian hand-picks one to have the most explosive upside of all. It’s a little-known chemical company that’s up 65% over last year, yet still dirt cheap. With unrelenting demand, soaring 2022 earnings estimates, and $1.5 billion for repurchasing shares, retail investors could jump in at any time. This company could rival or surpass other recent Zacks’ Stocks Set to Double like Boston Beer Company which shot up +143.0% in little more than 9 months and NVIDIA which boomed +175.9% in one year.Free: See Our Top Stock and 4 Runners Up >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Apple Inc. (AAPL): Free Stock Analysis Report Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP): Free Stock Analysis Report JetBlue Airways Corporation (JBLU): Free Stock Analysis Report Target Corporation (TGT): Free Stock Analysis Report Nordstrom, Inc. (JWN): Free Stock Analysis Report Costco Wholesale Corporation (COST): Free Stock Analysis Report Broadcom Inc. (AVGO): Free Stock Analysis Report Spirit Airlines, Inc. (SAVE): Free Stock Analysis Report NIO Inc. (NIO): Free Stock Analysis Report CrowdStrike (CRWD): Free Stock Analysis ReportTo read this article on Zacks.com click here.Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacks7 hr. 21 min. ago Related News

Markets Wait for Key Jobs Data and Earnings Reports

Markets Wait for Key Jobs Data and Earnings Reports. Pre-market futures are flat-to-lower this morning, after a healthy week of trading that saw individual indices up from +1% to +3% over the last five days of trading. With this in mind, a lackluster start to a new week may just be awaiting to see which way the market winds are blowing, especially without any major economic news or earnings reports to reflect on. The Dow is -165 points at this hour, while the S&P 500 is -9 points and the Nasdaq is +2.In terms of economic news, this does promise to be a consequential week: it’s a new Jobs Week, where Wednesday’s private-sector payrolls from ADP ADP and JOLTS data from the Federal government joins Friday morning’s Employment Situation report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), with Weekly Jobless Claims between them. Last time around, there was a wide discrepancy between ADP and BLS numbers: 107K new jobs created in January versus 353K, respectively. We expect some revisions on both ends, while expectations are for between 150K job placements in February (ADP) and 210K on BLS.There will also be a healthy number of additional economic reports, such as Factory Orders, ISM Services, Wholesale Inventories, a new Beige Book, a revision to Q4 Productivity and U.S. trade Balance numbers. While none of these prints will be enough to move markets on their own, combined together — and with the various jobs reports out this week — we should get a nuanced take of the U.S. economy by the end of the week that we don’t have currently.We also have a perhaps surprising number of earnings reports expected this week, with retailers like Target TGT and Nordstrom JWN joining cybersecurity firm CrowdStrike CRWD and Chinese EV retailer NIO NIO all coming out with quarterly numbers — and that’s just for Tuesday. Beyond these, Broadcom AVGO and Costco COST bring out earnings results later this week. Overall, however, we’re just about to tie a bow on Q4 earnings season.In terms of “news” news this morning, JetBlue JBLU has announced the termination of its merger efforts with rival discount airline Spirit SAVE, which was not unexpected. In fact, the U.S. Department of Justice had already rejected the joining together of these two companies, and there was little belief among analysts in this space that anything was going to change in this regard. Also, Apple AAPL is reportedly being served with a $2 billion fine by a European commission related to reportedly unfair music streaming service practices. Zacks Names "Single Best Pick to Double" From thousands of stocks, 5 Zacks experts each have chosen their favorite to skyrocket +100% or more in months to come. From those 5, Director of Research Sheraz Mian hand-picks one to have the most explosive upside of all. It’s a little-known chemical company that’s up 65% over last year, yet still dirt cheap. With unrelenting demand, soaring 2022 earnings estimates, and $1.5 billion for repurchasing shares, retail investors could jump in at any time. This company could rival or surpass other recent Zacks’ Stocks Set to Double like Boston Beer Company which shot up +143.0% in little more than 9 months and NVIDIA which boomed +175.9% in one year.Free: See Our Top Stock and 4 Runners Up >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report Apple Inc. (AAPL): Free Stock Analysis Report Automatic Data Processing, Inc. (ADP): Free Stock Analysis Report JetBlue Airways Corporation (JBLU): Free Stock Analysis Report Target Corporation (TGT): Free Stock Analysis Report Nordstrom, Inc. (JWN): Free Stock Analysis Report Costco Wholesale Corporation (COST): Free Stock Analysis Report Broadcom Inc. (AVGO): Free Stock Analysis Report Spirit Airlines, Inc. (SAVE): Free Stock Analysis Report NIO Inc. (NIO): Free Stock Analysis Report CrowdStrike (CRWD): Free Stock Analysis ReportTo read this article on Zacks.com click here.Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacks7 hr. 21 min. ago Related News

Gold"s Time to Shine? (5 Bullish Catalysts)

After a decade of under performance, gold appears poised for a comeback. Several factors, including a dovish Fed and a massive technical breakout bode well for the precious metal. For the past decade, gold has been a serial underperformer. However, five signs suggest that it may be the precious metal’s time to shine, including:A “Dovish Fed” is a PositiveThe theme of the U.S. Federal Reserve was “Hawkishness.” A Hawkish monetary policy refers to a stance taken by central bankers that emphasizes a proactive approach toward controlling inflation, often involving higher interest rates and tighter monetary measures to cool down economic growth. However, after recent inflation readings have come in cooler than expected, the market expectations for the Fed Funds Rate suggest four interest rate cuts in 2024.Image Source: Charlie Bilello, Creative PlanningLower rates should be a bullish catalyst for gold prices because lower rates tend to weaken the dollar. As a result, investors will turn to gold as a hedge against currency depreciation.Commercial Traders are Overwhelmingly ShortCommercial traders are entities or individuals engaged in business activities related to the underlying assets being traded (in this case, gold). These traders are typically involved in the production, processing, or distribution of commodities and goods. Commercial traders often use futures contracts to hedge against price fluctuations, managing the risks associated with their core business activities. Historically, traders want to fade commercials when it comes to the gold market. Currently, commercials are more than 70% short.Image Source: amChartsPrice is Emerging from a Multi-Year Base StructureAs the old Wall Street adage goes, “The longer the base, the higher in space.” It’s difficult to find a longer base than the SPDR Gold Trust ETF (GLD). GLD is clearing highs not seen since August 2020. In my experience, the longer and more frustrating a base structure is, the better it works when it ultimately emerges. Furthermore, volume provided clues on Friday. Turnover was heavy at more than two times the 50-day average.Image Source: TradingViewMassive Deficit + Interest on DeficitThe U.S. faces a mindboggling deficit of $34 trillion and is growing rapidly. As the 2024 election approaches, investors must accept that fact that Biden and Trump, the two overwhelming frontrunners, are not known for their fiscal conservatism. Furthermore, interest payments are swelling, ranking fourth in spending (only behind Social Security, Medicare, & Defense). In other words, don’t expect a budget surplus any time soon – the last surplus for the federal government was in 2001!Image Source: U.S. TreasuryU.S. Sanctions & BRICS DemandBRICS is an acronym for an association of five major emerging national economies- which stands for Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa (Egypt, Ethiopia, Iran, & the UAE have been added to the original BRICS recently) – known for their significant influence on regional and global affairs. BRICS was formed to promote cooperation and collaboration among its member countries, which are major emerging economies, to address common challenges, foster economic development, and enhance their collective influence on global stage. By working together, BRICS seeks to strengthen their positions in international institutions, promote inclusive development, and contribute to global economic governance reforms.How does the BRICS impact the price of gold? The U.S. has levied severe sanctions on BRICS members such as Russia and newcomer Iran. With Russia locked in a multi-year conflict with Ukraine (with no end in sight) and Iranian leadership funding proxy wars on U.S. troops globally, the two countries are essentially barred from using the U.S. dollar and are forced to seek alternatives. In an effort to “de-dollarize” and provide an alternative to the U.S. dollar (which is no longer backed by gold), the BRICS countries have been dramatically increasing their purchases of gold on the international market – a trend that should last for years to come and put a floor under gold and gold proxies like the Van Eck Gold Miners ETF (GDX). Bottom LineAfter a decade of underperformance, gold appears poised for a comeback. Several factors, including a dovish Federal Reserve stance and a massive technical breakout bode well for the precious metal. Zacks Names "Single Best Pick to Double" From thousands of stocks, 5 Zacks experts each have chosen their favorite to skyrocket +100% or more in months to come. From those 5, Director of Research Sheraz Mian hand-picks one to have the most explosive upside of all. It’s a little-known chemical company that’s up 65% over last year, yet still dirt cheap. With unrelenting demand, soaring 2022 earnings estimates, and $1.5 billion for repurchasing shares, retail investors could jump in at any time. This company could rival or surpass other recent Zacks’ Stocks Set to Double like Boston Beer Company which shot up +143.0% in little more than 9 months and NVIDIA which boomed +175.9% in one year.Free: See Our Top Stock and 4 Runners Up >>Want the latest recommendations from Zacks Investment Research? Today, you can download 7 Best Stocks for the Next 30 Days. Click to get this free report SPDR Gold Shares (GLD): ETF Research Reports VanEck Gold Miners ETF (GDX): ETF Research ReportsTo read this article on Zacks.com click here.Zacks Investment Research.....»»

Category: topSource: zacks7 hr. 21 min. ago Related News

Good Story Versus Bad Valuations

Good Story Versus Bad Valuations Authored by Will Denyer via Evergreen Gavekal blog, In the run-up to Nvidia’s earnings release late Wednesday, there was a palpable concern in the market that the AI boom’s flagship would disappoint lofty expectations; what is now Wall Street’s most heavily traded stock traded -2% down during the afternoon session. And then Nvidia did it again, exceeding expectations in terms of revenue, earnings and forward guidance. The stock promptly jumped 9% in after-hours trading, which helped to lift Nasdaq futures by 1.5%. And the bullish sentiment spread to Asia Thursday morning, where after a 34-year wait Japan’s Nikkei 225 finally edged above its December 1989 record high. With the terminals a sea of green, the obvious question for investors is the one Louis raised a couple of weeks ago—will markets in general, and US growth stocks in particular, continue to Party Like It’s 1999? Or are we heading for a 2000-style crunch? Put differently, will a good story be overcome by bad valuations? In the late 1990s, the story was that the internet was going to generate exceptional earnings growth for companies in tech, media, and telecoms. The TMT bubble inflated until by early 2000 the prospective earnings yield on US growth stocks was pitiful, both in absolute terms and when compared to the real yields in US fixed income (whether bonds or bills). Eventually, the valuation gap became too great and the market started to have doubts about when clicks would be converted into revenues, and the bubble burst. Investors fled growth stocks for fixed income, with growth stocks losing a quarter of their value in 2000, while bonds rallied. By the end of the year, risk-adjusted real yields on the two asset classes had largely converged (see the chart below). Meanwhile, value stocks, which never got anything like as overvalued, were flat for the year. It was not until the US recession began in March 2001 that value stocks joined the sell-off. Fast forward to today and the relative valuation story is similar. Equities are generally expensive relative to fixed income. But the biggest gap is between growth stocks and short-term US treasuries. Given this valuation spread, a continuation of the current rally in US growth stocks likely depends on one or both of the following: (i) earnings continue to exceed expectations; (ii) the Federal Reserve cuts rates and real bond yields fall—with no recession. Either is possible. On the earnings side, the strong recent economic data helps. January saw impressive payrolls growth and a pick-up in PMIs (February PMIs are out on Friday and will be worth monitoring). It is also encouraging that the leaders of this boom—Nvidia, Microsoft, Amazon, Meta etc.— have seen strong revenue and earnings growth, not just click growth. The balance sheets of these companies are also generally stronger than the balance sheets of the TMT bubble leaders, with less leverage and more cash. And as Louis has pointed out, unlike 1999-2000 there is little IPO activity today to leach away the liquidity supporting the stocks of the market leaders. One big question is whether final demand for generative AI grows by as much as expected. Currently, Nvidia cannot make chips fast enough to meet the demand of its customers, and specifically of its four biggest customers— Amazon, Microsoft, Google and Meta—which account for 40% of its revenues. So long as final demand for generative AI continues to grow rapidly, these customers will likely continue to demand more chips from Nvidia and others, even as they are all developing their own AI chips. But if final demand for generative AI disappoints, today’s AI investment boom could result in overcapacity. On the inflation front, the risk is that January’s uptick in US CPI and PPI inflation, along with the year-to-date rebound in oil prices, is not just noise but the start of a reversal from last year’s disinflationary trend. This is the subject of intense debate within Gavekal. From my perspective, I still believe the balance of evidence suggests inflation will remain benign. But any more upside surprises in the inflation data will make the Fed more cautious about the timing and pace of rate cuts, because inflation remains the principal consideration determining Fed policy. If the Fed keeps short rates elevated while continuing quantitative tightening, the relatively high real yields on bonds and especially on bills could begin to weigh on US growth stocks. If inflation surprises on the upside, and the Fed confounds expectations for rate cuts, “T-bill and chill” will likely prove the investment strategy of choice. The macro outlook for growth and inflation is always uncertain, and today is no exception. A continuation of the recent “soft landing” or “disinflationary boom” scenario is quite possible. The potential of generative AI appears great. But given the extreme valuation gap between T-bills and growth stocks today, as in 2000 it is probably wise to take some profits on US growth stocks, and to buy more attractively-valued US value stocks, cheaper markets such as Brazil or China, or simply to load up on US T-bills. Tyler Durden Mon, 03/04/2024 - 14:20.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nyt11 hr. 21 min. ago Related News

What it would take to survive on Dune"s planet Arrakis, according to 3 experts

Three experts explain what it would take for humans to survive the heat, lack of water, and other harsh conditions of Dune's planet, Arrakis. Covering yourself is important to survive the sun-baked planet of Arrakis. Niko Tavernise/Warner Bros.The desert planet, Arrakis, in "Dune: Part Two" has extreme temperatures and little water.Surviving on such a planet would take technology and adaptability.Three experts explain what it might be like to live on Dune's planet.In a distant star system, 20,000 years into the future, a scorchingly hot planet with arid deserts and little water is home to blue-eyed, seminomadic inhabitants called the Fremen.Frank Herbert first described this harsh, fictional world of Arrakis in his 1965 novel "Dune," which was recently adapted into a film trilogy. The trilogy's second iteration "Dune: Part Two" debuted in US theaters Friday.The movie was shot in the deserts outside Abu Dhabi, but we wondered what it would actually take to survive on a real-life Arrakis.While it would require some ingenuity and technology, it wouldn't be impossible, according to scientists we spoke with."There are populations that have lived for centuries and even millennia in deserts," Seth Collings Hawkins, a wilderness medicine specialist with Wake Forest University School of Medicine, told Business Insider.What the planet in Dune would look like in real life"There are so many factors that make Earth habitable to humans," Amy J. Kreykes, an aerospace medicine expert at the University of Texas Medical Branch, told BI.That includes everything from the atmosphere to its distance from the sun to its available water."Everything is just uniquely perfect," she said, "and really any deviation from any of that could make other environments a hostile environment for humans."Dune's planet Arrakis has enormous sandworms, a drug known as spice that helps with interstellar travel, and two moons. Yet it's not totally dissimilar to Earth.According to experts, Frank Herbert did an impressive job creating a realistic world in "Dune."Warner Bros. PicturesWhen "Dune: Part One" came out in 2021, University of Bristol meteorologist Alexander Farnsworth and several other scientists used a weather-prediction climate model to simulate the conditions of Arrakis.They input everything they could find from The Dune Encyclopedia on the planet's geographical features, atmosphere, and astronomy.There were a few places where the team's model differed from the book's descriptions, like the weather at the planet's poles and tropics, for example.Overall, though, Farnsworth said he was impressed by the world Herbert created."I think what surprised me most was overall how accurate Frank Herbert was in envisioning a desert world without having a physics background or a supercomputer to run any sort of calculations on," he said."He must have done a huge amount of research into the various earth system components to understand how such a world could work," he added. In fact, Herbert said he spent six years researching for the book.Based on their calculations, Farnsworth and the other researchers found that living on Arrakis would be possible, though probably not all that pleasant.Surviving Arrakis' lack of waterStillsuits in "Dune" help prevent the characters from deadly dehydration. Warner Bros.Planet Arrakis lacks oceans, lakes, or even tiny puddles on its surface. Needless to say, that's bad news for humans."There's a rule of threes," Hawkins said. The human body can go for about three minutes without oxygen, about three days without water, and about three weeks without food. "This would be the point at which your body would start to break down," he said.To survive such dry conditions on Dune, the fictional Fremen wear what are called stillsuits, which capture the body's perspiration and other bodily fluids and turn them into drinkable water.However, this concept isn't completely sci-fi.Hawkins called space the "ultimate water-deficient environment," which is why the International Space Station's toilets turn nearly 85% of astronauts' urine into drinking water.Reclaiming that moisture is essential in environments where there's no ready external source. However, as crucial as water is, on Arrakis, the temperature is the real killer."You would probably get heat stroke before you would die of dehydration," Hawkins said.Surviving Arrakis' temperature extremesIf the lack of water on Arrakis doesn't kill you, the heat certainly will if you're not prepared.Warner Bros.Unlike in the book, Farnsworth's scientific model of a real-life Arrakis found the tropics to be more hospitable than the polar regions because the temperatures would be milder year-round.At the poles, the temperatures ranged from 158 degrees Fahrenheit in the summer to -76 degrees Fahrenheit in the winter. Meanwhile, temperatures at the tropics would range from 56 to 113 degrees."So [at the poles] it is not just heat stress but also cold stress that living things would have to contend with," on a real-life Arrakis, he said.Therefore, if you could pick, you'd want to live near the equator on Arrakis."The most feared consequence of being out in that environment is heat stroke, which is literally cooking of the brain," Hawkins said. The body's temperature would rise to 106 or 107 degrees Fahrenheit, hotter than a fever.Travel by night would be the smartest way to move around on Arrakis.Warner Bros."You just wouldn't travel during the day at all," he said. Everyone would find shelter until temperatures began to cool off at night. In the event that you'd have to venture out during the day, you'd need something akin to a stillsuit."It really seems paradoxical [to cover yourself], but we know now that a lot of the problem is the radiation and the heat exposure from the sun," Hawkins said.Certain fabrics are both breathable and good at reflecting heat. Integrating heat-conducting materials into clothing can help, but you would still want some kind of internal fan or air conditioner, Hawkins said."With technology, we can actually add tools on that help prolong our time out in the sun or in the hot environment with less bad effects," Hawkins said.Surviving Arrakis' atmosphereLack of water isn't the only thing that would make growing plants on Arrakis difficult.Warner Bros.When it comes to the composition of the atmosphere, "humans are very specific in their needs," Kreykes said.The atmosphere on Arrakis is similar to Earth. It has similar pressure, slightly less nitrogen (74.32% compared to about 78% on our planet), and a bit more oxygen (23.58% versus Earth's 21%).Despite the similarities, humans might still have an adjustment period."Anytime that you start messing with the atmosphere and changing those parameters, that has the potential to have significant effects on the human," Kreykes said. "Any deviation would need to be looked at very, very closely for habitability for humans."Arrakis also has a little less carbon dioxide than Earth, which could affect plant growth. It would be another challenge on top of the limited water sources.A glimpse of the future Earth?Earth is becoming more similar to Arrakis every day as the climate crisis raises global temperatures, but thankfully climate scientists don't predict giant worms in Earth's future.Warner Bros.While learning to tame giant sandworms is a problem that Earth will hopefully never have to face, parts of our planet aren't all that different from Arrakis.For example, the Sonoran Desert along the Mexican-U.S. border recently hit 177 degrees Fahrenheit, one of the hottest surface temperatures on record.Arizona, New Mexico, and California have all faced droughts or water shortages in recent years.As Earth continues to warm in the face of climate change, excessive heat and water scarcity will continue to affect not only humans but plants and animals worldwide.One reason for the popularity of "Dune" and similar speculative fiction, Hawkins said, is because we can see elements of our own futures in it, "and I do think that this story has that message for us."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: worldSource: nyt12 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

China Panics As Bitcoin Nears Record High, Tops Meta"s Market-Cap; ETH ETF "Potential Isn"t Priced In"

China Panics As Bitcoin Nears Record High, Tops Meta's Market-Cap; ETH ETF "Potential Isn't Priced In" Bitcoin has reached a new record high in over 30 currencies this week, including India and Japan (and the euro this morning), but the cryptocurrency's nearing record highs in China has sparked renewed warnings from Chinese state media about the risks of investing in cryptocurrencies, as interest around digital assets remains strong in the country despite a sweeping ban on crypto mining and trading. Bitcoin has passed all-time highs in 30+ countries, including China and India. pic.twitter.com/63CnC9DE0F — Balaji (@balajis) February 28, 2024 As SMCP reports, a rebound in bitcoin prices cannot “hide” the underlying risks of the digital asset, state-owned newspaper Economic Daily said on Sunday. Wild fluctuations in bitcoin value remain the norm, and cryptocurrencies have yet to enter the mainstream, the article said, adding that regulatory scrutiny of the market remains tight. Investors should maintain a “clear and rational” mindset, it said. Bitcoin in Renminbi very close to record highs... Chinese state media has persistently tried to dissuade people from engaging in cryptocurrency-related activities, as authorities cited risks of capital flight and financial instability. In September 2021, 10 government bodies escalated the country’s crypto ban by jointly declaring a broad range of cryptocurrency-related activities as illegal financial activities. In 2022, as cryptocurrency prices plunged following a series of company meltdowns, the Economic Daily warned that the prices of bitcoin, which the newspaper called “nothing more than a string of digital codes”, could head to its “original value” of zero. In the same year, executives at Blockchain-based Service Network, a state-backed Chinese initiative pushing for the commercial adoption of blockchain technology, called cryptocurrencies “the biggest Ponzi scheme in human history”. All that sounds very familiar to the narratives of Liz Warren, Jamie Dimon, and Gary Gensler (who of course have no dog in this fight at all). In case you're confused: yes, crypto trading and mining has been banned in China since 2021. But, battered by a slumping stock market, Reuters reports that more and more Chinese investors are using creative ways to own bitcoin and other crypto assets that they believe are safer than investing in crumbling stock and property markets at home. China's economic downturn "has made investment on the mainland risky, uncertain and disappointing, so people are looking to allocate assets offshore", said a senior executive of a Hong Kong-based cryptocurrency exchange, who declined to be identified due to sensitivity of the topic. Bitcoin and crypto assets have attracted such investors, he said: "Almost everyday, we see mainland investors coming into this market." The underground crypto market in China is thriving as many believe that Chinese officials are cognisant of how disruptive bitcoin can be and yet aware of its huge potential, and hence their endorsement of crypto trading in Hong Kong, to keep a toehold in the crypto business booming in financial centres such as Singapore and New York. Dylan Run, a Shanghai-based finance sector executive, started moving a bit of his money into cryptocurrencies in early 2023, when he realized that the Chinese economy and its stock markets were going downhill. "Bitcoin is a safe haven, like gold," says Run. Speaking of gold, it took the first Gold ETF over two years before its AUM hit $10BN, BlackRock’s iShares Bitcoin Trust (IBIT) has amassed $10 billion in assets under management in just seven weeks. “Bitcoin ETF inflows have absolutely blown gold’s out of the water. Not even close, utterly dwarfed, decimated,” said Reflexivity Research co-founder Will Clemente on March 3. But, notably, while Gold ETFs have seen outflows, the price of gold is breaking out to the upside also, near record highs. Peter Schiff remains unimpressed. On March 2, he said CNBC was so fixated on the “sideshow going on with Bitcoin and the new Bitcoin ETFs, that they haven’t even reported on today’s $43 rise in the price of gold or the new record-high price in the gold ETF GLD.” But Michael Saylor remains committed and believes that "we’re in the Bitcoin gold rush era. It started in January of 2024 and will run until about November of 2034.” Specifically, he explained in a recent interview, institutions will compete to capture as much of Bitcoin’s ever-decreasing supply as possible until the end of 2034, as 99% of Bitcoin will have been mined by then. MUST WATCH‼️ - Michael Saylor: We are in the Bitcoin Gold Rush era. It started in January 2024 and will last until the end of 2034 when 99% of all Bitcoin will have been mined. #Bitcoin pic.twitter.com/LbAAaYRgMo — Neil Jacobs (@NeilJacobs) March 1, 2024 As CoinTelegraph reports, Saylor also said the spot Bitcoin ETFs are currently only serving as a “distribution channel” to 10–20% of those interested at the moment, but he sees this rising upward to 100% once banks and institutional wirehouses start facilitating Bitcoin trades. “When they can buy via their bank, their institutional wirehouse, their prime broker, they will make a $50 million decision in one hour.” Saylor believes almost all banks will eventually be pressured into custodying Bitcoin because their largest clients demand it. “You’re going to see resistance drop," he said, adding: “There will be a day where Bitcoin blasts past gold [and] trade more than the S&P index ETFs.” And, according to Goldman Sachs flows desk, there is a growing interest from institutional investors. The GS ETF desk has been at the forefront of client conversations around these products, leveraging our broader digital assets team to tailor a suite of ETF-based BTC solutions. Desk flows have been dominated by high net worth individuals and retail – the desk has been interacting with these requests via RFQ platforms and direct inquiries. The products are starting to pick up with block volume... 'Block volume' is usually associated with large institutional traders, not HNW or Retail. The desk has also been fielding inquiries around products switches out of spot and into the ETFs given the product efficiencies – as these ETFs continues to grow and institutional investors enter the space, would expect to see an uptick in this type of flow. But bitcoin getting big again raises the specter of the kind of government intervention we have seen before (just as China did above). Big? Bitcoin just overtook Meta in terms of market cap... And how will governments intervene. Well we have already seen some hints, with claims that crypto-mining is sucking the grid dry, killing the climate, and leaving us all cold and starving (ok some hyperbole offered there, but it's coming). Michael Saylor has an answer for that canard too as he sees some of the heat coming off of Bitcoin when it comes to environmental concerns in the future, if not already. He argued that as Bitcoin has become increasingly energy-efficient, politicians and environmental lobbyists are starting to shift their attention to AI’s energy demands. “If you look at AI, a lot of these hyper scalers are looking to scale up 60 gigawatts this year, and they’re wanting to go to 600 gigawatts within a decade, so what’s going to happen is they’re going to inherit all of the energy FUD [fear, uncertainty and doubt] that we used to have.” “So they will actually throw all their lobbyists at that.” Correct. AI is extremely dirty (energy wise) and thirsty (water demand).#Bitcoin is increasingly powered by clean renewables and doesn’t need water. — John Bottomley (@BitcoinVeritus) March 3, 2024 The other potential way for governments to intervene is directly. As Landon Manning writes at Bitcoin Magazine, the US federal government has once again added to its substantial Bitcoin hoard, transferring $922 million worth from wallets associated with Bitfinex hackers in a seizure. Over the course of a series of various seizures and other asset forfeitures, the United States federal government has accumulated and holds enough Bitcoin to unquestionably count as one of the largest whales. Even though hundreds of millions of bitcoins from this source have already been sold at government auctions or through other means, there are still billions left to go. For their part, law enforcement agencies seem to be in no hurry to wash their hands of these assets. Regardless of what the government’s plans are with this money, a seizure like this has once again highlighted the sheer size of the federal government’s Bitcoin reserve. Thankfully, the government’s dealings with these assets are all a matter of public record, and Bitcoin transactions themselves are all completely transparent on the blockchain.  In fact, the government currently holds nearly 1% of all Bitcoin in circulation. Regardless of claims that prosecutors have no interest in maximizing profits when disposing of these assets, it’s undeniable that the government holds substantial leverage over the whole space. These seizures are particularly interesting due to some recent comments made by exiled whistleblower Edward Snowden. Specifically, considering the rising global acceptance of Bitcoin in regulation and traditional finance, Snowden predicted that “A national government will be revealed this year to have been buying Bitcoin—the modern replacement for monetary gold—without having disclosed that fact publicly”. Prediction: A national government will be revealed this year to have been buying Bitcoin—the modern replacement for monetary gold—without having disclosed that fact publicly. — Edward Snowden (@Snowden) February 28, 2024 The question is, of course, will they 'sell' or are they acquiring - If Bitcoin is the digital gold, after all, it would only make sense that powerful nations would want to build up reserves.    But, it's not all about Bitcoin, Ethereum has started the week strongly, topping $3500, just 9 days away from pushing the Dencun upgrade to mainnet on March 13. As Decrypt reports, it's long been said that the upgrade, which will introduce proto-danksharding to the network, will make transactions much faster and cheaper. Additionally, as Jack Inabinet writes at Bankless.com, while Wall Street has no woken up to bitcoin ETFs' potential, they have yet to price that into ETH's future.   Mike Novogratz, CEO of crypto investment firm Galaxy Digital, made his opinions on the matter public this week, stating that he sees spot ETH ETFs receiving approval sometime this year in a Bloomberg interview. There is a litany of reasons that Novogratz may be eyeing this year for approval, but chief among them is the SEC’s May 23 deadline to approve or deny VanEck’s spot ETH ETF application, the earliest final approval date among active proposals. New deadline to obsess over just dropped May 23rd is the final deadline for decision on VanEck’s spot ETH ETF pic.twitter.com/dgi5EVbPeQ — Will (@WClementeIII) January 10, 2024 While the SEC has listed numerous crypto assets, including the tokens of alternative proof-of-stake blockchains like Solana, as potential securities in its lawsuits against crypto exchanges, not a single enforcement action has contemplated Ether as a potential security. Further, the SEC appears to have already provided clarity on its decision to consider ETH as a non-security by voting to approve ETH ETFs that hold commodity futures last October! By approving ETH ETFs based on ETH commodity futures contracts, the SEC has officially provided clarity on ETH’s status as a non-security. With so much innovation being built on the Ethereum blockchain, this creates a clearer path for builders. It's ridiculous and insulting that… — Brian Quintenz (@BrianQuintenz) October 2, 2023 Spot crypto ETFs provide a direct connection between TradFi capital stores and crypto markets; the extremely high likelihood that ETH ETFs receive approval from the SEC has some eyeing long ETH as one of the most obvious trades in crypto, especially when considering when you can have both ETH exposure and farm upcoming restaking airdrops… The Bitcoin ETF broke records. Next up: everyone front-running the Ethereum ETF. We could get $10k ETH just on that. ETH is the most obvious trade in crypto rn. — RYAN SΞAN ADAMS - rsa.eth (@RyanSAdams) March 1, 2024 As Bitcoin’s halving approaches this April, it's equally important to pay attention to Ethereum’s ultra sound money properties and the accelerating pace of Ether deflation. All this talk about halving and meanwhile... pic.twitter.com/TtpnOSOql6 — zerohedge (@zerohedge) March 1, 2024 Should we merely be at the beginning stages of a bull market, it is probable that a future influx of users to Ethereum (and its L2s) will increase the rate of Ether burn, allowing the ecosystem’s monetary policy to shine through to external capital who can ape via spot ETF! Finally, as CoinDesk reports, more than 97% of BTC addresses are now "in the money," according to data tracked by analytics firm IntoTheBlock. That's the highest proportion since November 2021, when the largest cryptocurrency by market value hit a record high around $69,000. "Given the substantial percentage of addresses in profit, the selling pressure from users attempting to break even no longer has a significant effect," IntoTheBlock said in a newsletter published Friday, when BTC traded near $62,000. Judging by today's price action... ...the gamma-squeeze we warned about is still in play. Tyler Durden Mon, 03/04/2024 - 12:00.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nyt16 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

Dispersion, Correlation, Volatility And The Stock Bubble

Dispersion, Correlation, Volatility And The Stock Bubble Submitted by SpotGamma; Join the SpotGamma Volatility Challenge and get ready for 4 days of in-depth exploration into volatility, where traders of stocks, options, and futures will learn to track, assess, and trade with precision. Dispersion, Correlation, Volatility and the Stock Bubble Dispersion readings are hitting highs per @SPGlobal, particularly in Mid Caps, while correlation is moving toward lows and volatility is flat. What does that mean? Why does it matter? High dispersion means individual components of an index are moving more than the whole, similar to the idea of market breadth. Traders have complained that the current market has “lacked breadth”. Low correlation tells us not all components are moving in the same direction. Dispersion is measured by calculating the weighted average of the variances (i.e. movement) of individual stock returns relative to a stocks weighting in the index. This therefore reflects the performance of the individual stocks in the index vs the index’s overall performance. ex: “MSFT is +5% while vs SPX +1%, and MSFT is 7% weighting in the SPX” (it really is a 7% weighting). This is where correlation comes in (chart above, red line plots). As noted, correlation is at lows (SP500 left, SP400 right in the chart above). Correlation measures the degree to which stocks move in relation to each other, indicating how closely their returns are linked over a given period. Currently we see low correlation with high dispersion, which indicates that stocks are moving significantly but in different directions, highlighting a lack of a unified market trend and suggesting diverse individual stock performances independent of the overall market movement. This also hearkens back to “lack of breadth” as a risk flag in this rally. ex: “Semi’s and crypto are crushing it, everything else is a drag.” Conversely, when correlation is high with a high dispersion reading , it suggests that while individual stocks are moving significantly, they tend to move in the same direction as the overall market, indicating a broadly uniform market trend but with varying degrees of intensity. The prime example of this this was the March Covid crash, where everything was going down, but some stuff crashed more than others. Lastly, note that SPGlobal includes a plot of index volatility (yellow) against dispersion (blue). As you can see, dispersion is increasing with volatility stagnant (red box). Compare this to the Covid crash wherein vol went up with dispersion (blue box). This current reading is symptomatic of the “stock up, vol up” environment we’re in, wherein there is thematic chasing (i.e. semis gone wild), but other stuff is left more or less drifting. What’s the significance of dispersion – volatility spread? The argument is that one would normally view an increase in dispersion to current levels as a signal of volatility (i.e. more movement) more normally associated crashing markets. But the fact that index volatility is not going up is indicative of….bubbles? SP Global highlights the period of 1999-2001 as showing: “a marked dispersion, driven by the deeply idiosyncratic behavior of the technology sector. But index volatility did not rise, as sectors other than technology performed more normally. Thus, dispersion can better capture periods were only a portion of the market either bubbles or crashes.” That sounds pretty familiar, regardless of if you think current trading action is more warranted (i.e. the AI revolution is not the internet bubble). These trends can last for some time, as they did in 2001. The dispersion – vol spread started in late 1999 and didn’t close until early ’21. This was after the bubble popped in Q3 of ’20. So, what are some quicker signal that the party is over? For that you want to watch for signals that the “stock up, vol up” regime is stalling out, which should coincide with a reduction in call volumes. One way to catch this shifting behavior is through looking at skew. Consider the 1 month SMH (semi ETF) skew (green), which shows upside calls all with a higher IV than at-the-money IV. This is a signal of high demand. Conversely, put IV is depressed. If & when the SMH upside demand stalls, we’d expect skew to shift back towards something like Oct ’23 (gray line), which results in call IV deflating, and put IV increasing. * * * Join the SpotGamma Volatility Challenge and get ready for 4 days of in-depth exploration into volatility, where traders of stocks, options, and futures will learn to track, assess, and trade with precision. Tyler Durden Mon, 03/04/2024 - 12:40.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nyt16 hr. 5 min. ago Related News

Hong Kong"s Markets Regulator Issues Warning Against Crypto Exchange BitForex

Hong Kong's regulator for securities and futures markets has warned the public about cryptocurrency exchange BitForex for suspected fraud, it announced Monday......»»

Category: forexSource: coindesk19 hr. 49 min. ago Related News

S&P Futures Flat As MegaTech Bubble Gets Bigger Around The Globe

S&P Futures Flat As MegaTech Bubble Gets Bigger Around The Globe US equity futures were flat after closing Friday at a new record high above 5,100 for the first time ever, and gaining for 16 of the past 18 weeks, while European shares extended gains to new all time highs after six weeks of gains, as investors waited for reassurances that central banks are on track to cut interest rates in the coming months. US equity futures traded in a narrow range with S&P futures trading down 0.1% while Nasdaq futures were modestly in the green. NVDA is +1.3% pre-mkt but the rest of Mag7 are flat or down; Apple was down more than 1% after it was hit Monday with a €1.8 billion ($2 billion) penalty from the European Union over an investigation into allegations it shut out music-streaming rivals. SMCI soared 16% after it was added to the S&P 500 index in the latest quarterly weighting change. Treasuries slipped, while commodities are mixed with ags higher and Energy lower; WTI falls below $80 even though OPEC+ extended production cuts through mid-year. Bitcoin topped $65,000, leading traders to bet the cryptocurrency will surpass the record price of almost $69,000, hit during the pandemic. With no US macro data today and only one Fedspeaker, we may see a low volume day as investors await the next batch of data, ISM-Srvcs (tmrw), JOLTS (Weds), Productivity (Thurs), and NFP (Fri). Earnings this week have AVGO and several Consumer/Retailer names which may help clarify the picture on the Consumer. In US premarket trading, chipmakers continued their ascent, with Western Digital Corp., Micron Technology Inc. and Nvidia Corp. rising more than 1%. Tesla Inc dropped 1.7% on a drop in Chinese auto sales. Cryptocurrency-linked stocks also rallied after Bitcoin breached the $65,000 mark, extending gains to a second consecutive session. Here are some other notable premarket movers: Super Micro Computer soared 16% and Deckers Outdoor also rallied aboug 6% after the pair were added to the S&P 500 index in the latest quarterly weighting change. Dutch Bros rise 2.8% after the drive-through coffee chain was upgraded to overweight from neutral at Piper Sandler, which says it’s the right time to become more constructive on the stock. Lyft shares gain 5.2% after RBC Capital Markets speculates about a partnership between the ride-hailing service and food delivery firm DoorDash (DASH US), with the broker upgrading both to outperform. Toast shares gain 1.3% in premarket trading after the restaurant software company was initiated with an outperform recommendation at Evercore ISI, which also set a Street-high price target for the stock. Macy’s rose 16% after Arkhouse Management Co. and Brigade Capital Management boosted their offer for the department store operator by 14% after the company rebuffed a previous proposal. The S&P 500 has now gained for 16 of the last 18 weeks, a run not seen since 1971, Deutsche Bank analysts pointed out. That rally was fanned further last week by US data that reinforced bets the Federal Reserve would be able to cut rates later this year. The earnings season, meanwhile, showed companies averaging 8% earnings growth. “Better economic outlook, bullish investor sentiment and some better earnings have supported the equity markets,” Jefferies strategist Mohit Kumar wrote in a note. “Whether it’s the economic outlook or the central bank ‘put’ being back on the table, investors are very positive on risky assets.” While markets have broadly pushed Fed policy-easing expectations to July, from the previously anticipated May, Kumar still expects 75-100 basis points worth of rate cuts this year, according to Bloomberg. Some hints could come this week from Fed Chair Jerome Powell’s congressional testimony, while the European Central Bank will hold a policy meeting on Thursday. A raft of economic data is also due, including US monthly payrolls figures on Friday. Europe's Stoxx 600 reversed earlier losses to trade up 0.3% to a new all time high with technology, health care and banks outperforming. Delivery Hero SE rose after announcing the launch of a financing transaction to amend and extend its financing facilities. Here are the biggest movers Monday: Delivery Hero rises as much as 6.9% after the German online food ordering services firm amended and extended its existing debt facilities, something Bernstein calls “overwhelmingly positive” Diasorin advances as much as 5.4% after the Italian biotechology firm said it’s Liaison Plex diagnostics platform received US FDA clearance, a very clear positive, analysts says Evonik rises as much as 4.5% after announcing job cuts and other measures that will reduce costs by €400 million annually by the end of 2026, with analysts positive on cost cuts Aryzta gains as much as 6.1%, the most since Jan. 19, after the Swiss industrial baker presented results that Stifel called “compelling” and fresh guidance which boosts confidence DS Smith shares rise as much as 2.1% to a one-year high, after Bloomberg reported late Friday that Mondi has increased its preliminary takeover offer for the rival packaging company BT Group advances as much as 2.7% as Berenberg upgrades the telecom operator to buy, saying the investment case should become much clearer and concerns seem overdone Henkel shares decline as much as 4.5% after the consumer-chemical producer posted in-line 4Q results. RBC flags company outlook for low-single-digit negative impact from M&A in 2024 Comet tumbles as much as 7.9%, the most in more than four months, after the Swiss supplier of radio frequency tools to the semiconductor industry posted an outlook below expectations SoftwareOne falls as much as 3.3% after the firm’s founding shareholders move to dissolve the group acting in concert between them and Bain Capital and terminate an underlying agreement Earlier in the session, Asian stocks gained, lifted by the tech sector, as traders prepared for a slew of central bank events and China’s key political meeting this week. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index rose 0.6%, with chipmakers TSMC and Samsung Electronics among the biggest boosts: the world’s top chipmaker, Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Co., rose to its highest-ever level.  Bets that the Federal Reserve will be able to cut rates as soon as June and Dell’s better-than-expected results provided support for tech shares. Taiwan’s Taiex jumped 2%, Korea’s Kospi rose more than 1% and Japan’s Nikkei 225 climbed above the key 40,000 level for the first time ever. The tech gains came on the heels of “the whole AI push again, especially in Taiwan,” said Xin-Yao Ng, an investment director at abrdn. “The AI thematic is very strong at the moment when themes like EV and renewables are facing issues.” Chinese equities were steady ahead of the National People’s Congress, an annual gathering of the nation’s top officials that may offer trading cues from policy priorities and signals about fiscal stimulus. While recent “national team” buying has put a near-term floor on the market, some investors say more consistent policies and structural reforms are needed for fund flows to meaningfully return. Hang Seng and Shanghai Comp. were choppy with an early lacklustre mood after the PBoC's liquidity drain, while China begins its Two Sessions meeting with the focus on the NPC tomorrow including Premier Li's first government work report and the official GDP target. ASX 200 lacked conviction amid varied data releases and despite initially printing a fresh record high. Nikkei 225 resumed its uptrend and climbed above the 40,000 level for the first time. KOSPI outperformed as it played catch up on its return from a 3-day weekend. In FX, the US dollar declined for a second day, in a quiet session with no US economic data due. The Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index is down 0.1% with muted moves across the G-10 currencies. The pound is the best performer, rising 0.2% versus the greenback ahead of the UK budget announcement on Wednesday. Sterling and euro outperformed developed-nation peers while most other currencies were down. USD/JPY rises 0.2% to 150.38, up for a second day GBP/USD also gains a second day to 1.2682, up almost 0.5% in two sessions EUR/USD climbs 0.2% to 1.0853 USD/CHF rises 0.1% to 0.8843; the pair fell as much as 0.3% to session low 0.8806 after Switzerland’s Feb CPI rose quicker than estimated In rates, treasuries fall, with US 10-year yields rising 2bps to 4.20%, underperforming core European rates. Treasury yields were cheaper by 2bp to 3bp across the curve with spreads broadly within 1bp of Friday’s close; 10-year yields trade around 4.21% with bunds and gilts outperforming by 3bp and 2bp in the sector. 2s10s and 5s30s spreads, little changed on the day, remain inside Friday’s sharp steepening ranges.Monday’s US session is expected to include at least 10 corporate bond offerings, while economic data slate is empty. Key labor-market indicators later this week include February jobs report Friday. The US IG dollar issuance slate empty so far, though syndicate desks are calling for roughly $30b of new IG sales this week and $130b in March In commodities, oil prices are flat, with WTI trading near $79.90 after OPEC+ extended its oil supply cutbacks to the middle of the year. Spot gold is little changed. Bitcoin continued to climb higher and rose more than 3% above 65,000, now just $4K away from a new all time high; price action which has lifted Crypto stocks such as Coinbase and Riot. Chinese state media warned against cryptocurrency trading as domestic interest surges amid the bitcoin rally, according to SCMP. Looking at today's calendar, the US economic data slate is empty for the session; ahead this week are S&P Global US services PMI, factory orders, ISM services, ADP employment, JOLTS and jobs report. Fed speakers scheduled include Harker at 11am; Barr, Powell, Daly, Kashkari, Mester and Williams are scheduled to appear later this week Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures little changed at 5,142.25 STOXX Europe 600 little changed at 498.06 MXAP up 0.4% to 174.83 MXAPJ up 0.7% to 531.07 Nikkei up 0.5% to 40,109.23 Topix down 0.1% to 2,706.28 Hang Seng Index little changed at 16,595.97 Shanghai Composite up 0.4% to 3,039.31 Sensex up 0.2% to 73,938.36 Australia S&P/ASX 200 down 0.1% to 7,735.79 Kospi up 1.2% to 2,674.27 German 10Y yield little changed at 2.40% Euro up 0.1% to $1.0848 Brent Futures little changed at $83.61/bbl Gold spot up 0.0% to $2,083.89 U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 103.84 Top Overnight News In the early 2000s, the U.S. and the global economy experienced a “China shock,” a boom in imports of cheap Chinese-made goods that helped keep inflation low but at the cost of local manufacturing jobs.  A sequel might be in the making as Beijing doubles down on exports to revive the country’s growth.  Propped up by cheap, state-directed loans, Chinese companies are glutting foreign markets with products they can’t sell at home. Some economists see this China shock pushing inflation down even more than the first. China’s economy is now slowing, whereas, in the previous era, it was booming. As a result, the disinflationary effect of cheap Chinese-manufactured goods won’t be offset by Chinese demand for iron ore, coal and other commodities. WSJ Beijing is expected to resist growing market pressure for much stronger stimulus to spur China’s economic recovery at its flagship annual political event this week, analysts have said, as President Xi Jinping focuses on turning the country into an advanced manufacturing superpower. FT Japan is considering calling an end to deflation in the wake of rising prices, Kyodo news reported, a move that would turn a new page for the world's fourth-largest economy after decades of economic stagnation scarred a generation of workers and investors. RTRS Israel has “basically signed on” to a six-week ceasefire that would be used to facilitate a second round of swaps of Israeli hostages for Palestinian prisoners, a senior US administration official said. FT OPEC+ extended its oil supply cutbacks to the middle of the year in a bid to avert a global surplus and shore up prices. The curbs — which on paper total roughly 2 million barrels a day — will remain in place until the end of June, according to delegates who asked not to be identified because the information isn’t public. Group leader Saudi Arabia accounts for half of the pledged reduction. BBG US real estate inflation is much cooler/tamer than the official gov’t data would suggest as rents ease amid a jump in supply and a downtick in demand (economists insist it’s only a matter of time before the CPI/PCE start to reflect reality). WaPo SMCI (Supermicro) and DECK (Deckers) will replace WHR (Whirlpool) and ZION (Zions Bancorp) in the S&P 500 prior to the open of trading on Mon March 18. WSJ Arkhouse and Brigade increase their bid for Macy’s from $21/shr. to $24/shr. and identify additional information about their financing for the deal. RTRS President Biden is struggling to overcome doubts about his leadership inside his own party and broad dissatisfaction over the nation’s direction, leaving him trailing behind Donald J. Trump just as their general-election contest is about to begin, a new poll by The New York Times and Siena College has found. With eight months left until the November election, Mr. Biden’s 43 percent support lags behind Mr. Trump’s 48 percent in the national survey of registered voters. NYT The recent rally has driven the share of market cap in stocks with extremely high valuations to levels similar to those reached during the euphoria of 2021. But the prevalence of extreme valuations today looks far less widespread than in 2021 after adjusting for market concentration. In contrast with 2021, the cost of capital (WACC) is much higher today and investors are focused on margins rather than “growth at any cost.” These headwinds from a higher WACC have also weighed on small-caps. Quality is expensive and will tactically underperform when confidence in the inflation outlook improves. However, a higher WACC means valuations of small and unprofitable growth stocks are unlikely to return to their 2021 highs. GIR A more detailed look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk APAC stocks traded mixed amid a tentative mood ahead of an event-packed week. ASX 200 lacked conviction amid varied data releases and despite initially printing a fresh record high. Nikkei 225 resumed its uptrend and climbed above the 40,000 level for the first time. KOSPI outperformed as it played catch up on its return from a 3-day weekend. Hang Seng and Shanghai Comp. were choppy with an early lacklustre mood after the PBoC's liquidity drain, while China begins its Two Sessions meeting with the focus on the NPC tomorrow including Premier Li's first government work report and the official GDP target. Top Asian News China NPC spokesperson said the 2024 annual parliamentary meeting will close on March 11th and they will make new laws to deepen economic reform including financial institutional reform to promote private companies, while the spokesperson said Premier Li will not give a press conference at the close of the NPC this year and will not hold a press conference in following years, according to Reuters. It was separately reported that Beijing is expected to resist market pressure for a much stronger stimulus to spur China’s economic recovery at the annual political event this week, according to FT. ZOZO (3092 JT), Disco Corp (6146 JT), and Socionext (6526 JT) are to join the Nikkei 225, from April 1 China's NDRC is to raise retail gasoline and diesel prices by CNY 125/ton and CNY 120/ton respectively from March 5th. Chinese insurers reportedly warn of debt risks at property giant Vanke (2202 HK/ 2 CH), via Bloomberg European bourses, Stoxx600 (+0.1%) began the session on a mixed footing and currently trade on either side of the unchanged mark in what has been a catalyst-thin morning. Sectors are mostly lower; Tech takes the top spot, seemingly benefitting from broad-base optimism within the sector. Basic Resources is hampered by the softer risk tone in Chinese trade overnight. US Equity Futures (ES -0.1%, NQ +0.1%, RTY +0.2%) are firmer, though trading with little direction ahead of a quiet docket on Monday. The RTY outperforms, lifted by gains in SMCI (+12.2%) and in tandem with strength in Bitcoin. Attention this week will be on appearances from Fed Chair Powell, the ECB and the US NFP report on Friday. Top European News UK Chancellor Hunt said he hoped to be able to lower taxes further in his annual budget on Wednesday but noted it would be “deeply unconservative” for him to do so in a way that required higher borrowing and his budget will be prudent and responsible, according to Reuters. Furthermore, Hunt said during an interview with the BBC that he wants to move towards lower taxes but will only do so in a responsible way and that the most unconservative thing he could do would be to cut taxes by increasing borrowing. UK Chancellor Hunt is putting together plans for up to GBP 9bln worth of tax increases and spending cuts in order to fund a 2p reduction in national insurance, according to The Times. UK Chancellor Hunt is reportedly expected to set out plans for private companies to trade shares on exchanges, according to FT. UK PM Sunak’s close allies reportedly worry that his chances of winning the next UK election have been made even more difficult as one of his Cabinet ministers, Business Secretary Badenock is said to be positioning to succeed him as Conservative Party leader, according to Bloomberg. EU’s Dombrovskis said it is positive that the e-commerce moratorium has been extended, while he noted there were disappointments related to agriculture and fisheries talks. S&P upgraded Portugal from BBB+ to A-; Outlook Positive amid ongoing steep external and government deleveraging. FX Contained trade for DXY on a 103 handle, holding above Friday's trough of 103.65 and the 200DMA at 103.79. Catalyst-light session thus far with greater attention on the week's upcoming risk events. The EUR briefly eclipsed Friday's high at 1.0856 before pulling back a touch. For now, is contained between between its 50DMA at 1.0867 and 200DMA at 1.0828. A slightly softer start to the week for JPY as USD/JPY maintains a footing on a 150 handle. Attention for the pair remains to the upside with Friday's high at 150.72 and the YTD peak at 150.88. A decisively more hawkish BoJ is required to change fortunes for the pair. The Swiss Franc is the marginal outperformer across the majors in the wake of firmer-than-expected inflation metrics. EUR/CHF remains above its 200DMA at 0.9560. ING continues to target a move towards 0.96 for EUR/CHF by spring. PBoC set USD/CNY mid-point at 7.1020 vs exp. 7.1906 (prev. 7.1059). Fixed Income USTs are the relative underperformers, and have been gradually fading from the 111-01 session peak which left USTs just one tick shy of Friday's best, a pullback which has been gradual and without any real driver but one that is relatively modest when compared to Friday's action overall. Bunds are in a tight 132.53-132.89 bound which keeps it near Friday's best of 132.87 but markedly shy of last week's 133.61 peak. There was no reaction to EZ Sentix as attention turns to ECB's Holzmann later today (ECB is in the quiet period) and the ECB Policy Announcement on Thursday. Gilts are slightly weaker than EGBs but with an equally narrow 30 tick range, the high point resides at 98.33 shy of Friday's 98.43 best and another 10 ticks from that week's contract peak. Commodities Sideways trade across crude futures with little impetus from the weekend OPEC+ output cut extension through Q2 (as expected), with the move seemingly limiting near-term downside. Geopolitics also remain in focus with Gaza truce talks underway; "Egyptian media reports 'significant progress' in talks between the mediators and Hamas on a ceasefire in Gaza", according to Walla News' Elster. A flat-to-subdued morning for precious metals with the Dollar index also caged in a tight range as participants await this week's myriad of risk events in the absence of unscheduled macro drivers; Spot gold found intraday resistance at Friday's high (2,088.19/oz) before waning. Mixed trade across base metals with copper firmer intraday despite the recently reported increases in Chinese inventories; 3M LME copper briefly fell under USD 8,500/t before reclaiming the level and currently prints a USD 8,481.50-8,570/t intraday range. OPEC+ members agreed to extend voluntary cuts to Q2 whereby Saudi Arabia is to extend its voluntary oil cut of 1mln bpd for Q2 with its output to be around 9mln bpd through June and Russia is to cut oil output and exports by an additional 471k bpd, while the UAE is to voluntary cut oil output by 163k bpd and Iraq will voluntary cut output by 220k bpd. Furthermore, Kazakhstan is to extend voluntary oil output cuts of 82k bpd through to Q2 2024 and Kuwait is to cut oil output by 135k bpd for June. Russian Deputy PM Novak said Russia will implement an additional voluntary oil and export output cut of 471k bpd for Q2 in which it will cut output by 350k bpd in April with exports cut by 121k bpd, while it will cut output by 400k bpd in May with exports cut by 71k bpd and will cut 471k bpd in June which will all be from output, according to Reuters and The Moscow Times. GCC ministerial meeting communiqué stated that the entire Durra gas field and its natural resources are jointly and only owned by Saudi Arabia and Kuwait. Iran’s Oil Minister said Iran aims to reach 1.3bln cubic metres per day of gas output in 5 years. HSBC says Qatar expansion is likely to prolong Global LNG glut until 2030; cuts Europe TTF forecasts by 14% on average to USD 9.25/9.5/MBTU in 2024/2025E EQT (EQT) is to curtail approximately 1bcf per day of gross production beginning late Feb amid low nat gas prices from warm winter weather and elevated storage inventories Q1 curtailments expected to total 30-40bcf of net production. Geopolitics: Middle East Israeli military spokesman said the IDF concluded the initial review of civilian deaths at the Gaza aid convoy in which it was concluded that the IDF did not carry out a strike towards the aid convoy and the majority of Palestinians that died were the result of a stampede, while forces fired warning shots and responded towards several individuals that approached forces posing an ‘immediate threat’. Hamas delegation arrived in Cairo on Sunday for ceasefire talks, while it was also reported that a Palestinian official familiar with Gaza truce talks said they were not there yet when asked whether a deal was imminent. Furthermore, Egyptian security sources had previously stated that parties agreed on the duration of a truce, as well as hostage and prisoner releases although the completion of a deal still requires an agreement on the withdrawal of Israeli forces from northern Gaza and a return of residents. US VP Harris said what we are seeing every day in Gaza is devastating and too many innocent Palestinians have been killed and Gazans are suffering from a humanitarian catastrophe. Harris added that Israel’s government must do more to increase the flow of aid, "no excuses", as well as work to restore basic services and restore order in Gaza. Furthermore, she said there must be an immediate ceasefire and the threat posed by Hamas must be eliminated, while she added there is a deal on the table and Hamas needs to agree to that deal, according to Reuters. US VP Harris is to meet with Israeli war cabinet member Gantz on Monday and US Secretary of State Blinken is also to meet with Gantz in Washington on Tuesday. US official said on Saturday that the outlines of a Gaza peace deal are in place and it depends on Hamas agreeing to release hostages, according to Reuters. Houthi transport ministry said hostile actions by British and US naval vessels against Yemen caused a malfunction in submarine cables in the Red Sea. Hezbollah claimed it detonated a large IED and fired artillery at an Israeli force that attempted to infiltrate Lebanon, according to a source via social media platform X. "Tangible progress on the second day of Cairo negotiations on the truce in Gaza", according to Egyptian media cited by Sky News Arabia. "Egyptian media reports 'significant progress' in talks between the mediators and Hamas on a ceasefire in Gaza", according to Walla News' Elster. OTHER Road traffic near Crimea’s port of Feodosia was temporarily restricted following reports of an explosion. China’s Embassy in the Philippines commented on remarks from the Philippines Ambassador to the US in which it stated the China-related remarks disregard basic facts, ‘wantonly hype up’ the South China Sea issue and maliciously smear China which they strongly condemn, according to Reuters. US Event Calendar Nothing scheduled Central Bank Speakers 11:00: Fed’s Harker Remarks on Economic Impact of Higher Education DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap We're currently on a run that you may not see again in your lifetimes. The S&P 500 last week completed a run of 16 positive weeks out of the last 18 for first time since 1971. If this carries on for another week it'll be 17 out of 19 for the first time since 1964. A remarkable and relentless period of performance. If the run survives this week it will have navigated a number of big events ending with US payrolls on Friday. Before that we have the US services ISM, China's Caixin services PMI, the start of China's National People's Congress, alongside Super Tuesday in the US presidential race tomorrow. Wednesday sees the latest JOLTS data, the BoC meeting, the UK budget and Powell's first congressional testimony of the week. Thursday has the latest ECB meeting. Biden's state of the union address, and Powell's second testimony. Friday has a fair bit of European data alongside payrolls, including German PPI and Industrial Production. Let's briefly review a few of these highlights now starting with payrolls. Our economists and consensus expect +200k against +353k last month with private payrolls at +175k (consensus +160k) versus +317k last month. Winter storms in February bring a lot of uncertainty to the reading as does the fact that January saw a low response rate versus long-term averages so revisions could be sizeable. Before that we'll hear from many Fed speakers (see the week ahead calendar at the end for them all) including Chair Powell's testimonies to the House Financial Services Committee and the Senate Banking Committee on Wednesday and Thursday, respectively. He will likely stick to the January FOMC script but the market always seem to get something new out of these appearances which include a lot of congressional Q&A. He may receive plenty of questions about the balance sheet and DB's Matt Luzzetti co-authored an important academic paper on Friday, discussed on releases by both Governor Waller and Dallas Fed President Logan, called "Quantitative Tightening Around the Globe: What Have We Learned?". The most interesting thing around the ECB meeting will be the updated staff forecasts where downgrades might not be as severe as they could have been a couple of months ago including to inflation where the flash print lasts week was ahead of consensus. So there is now unlikely to be any great urgency to cut and our economists have now pushed back their first cut to June from April. See their preview note here where they detail this and everything else you'd want to know about the meeting. In politics, tomorrow sees 'Super Tuesday', when 16 states and territories will be holding primary elections. It perhaps lacks a bit of razzmatazz this year as a Trump vs. Biden rematch looks the overwhelmingly most likely outcome outside of an event removed from the results of the primaries. Perhaps the most interesting thing to learn is whether pollsters are accurately gauging Mr Trump's actual support levels as a guide to more national trends/predictions for November. Moving on to Asia, in Japan, there will be several appearances by BoJ speakers including Governor Ueda tomorrow. In China, the main event will be the National People's Congress starting tomorrow. Our economists have an overview here and point to several key announcements to watch, including the 2024 growth target, the fiscal stance for 2024 and property sector policy. Staying with Asia, markets have started the week mostly on the positive side led by the KOSPI (+1.30%) after being closed on Friday. The Nikkei (+0.58%) is currently trading above 40,000 for the first time in history. Elsewhere, the CSI (+0.15%) and the Shanghai Composite (+0.22%) are edging higher ahead of the important political meeting this week. The Hang Seng (-0.06%) and the S&P/ASX 200 (-0.14%) are slightly weaker alongside S&P 500 (-0.11%) futures. 2yr (+1.45bps) and 10yr UST (+1.36 bps) yields are slightly higher, trading at 4.55% and 4.19%, respectively. Brent futures (+0.16%) are slightly higher at $83.68/bbl after OPEC+ members agreed over the weekend to extend voluntary crude supply cuts of 2.2 million barrels per day (mbpd) until the end of second quarter to support the "stability and balance of oil markets". This was as expected. Recapping last week now, and markets were given fresh impetus after the US PCE inflation report was in line with expectations, after some fears had built up of an even stronger print. The S&P 500 gained +0.95% last week (and +0.80% on Friday), meaning the index has now recorded positive weekly gains for 16 out of the last 18 weeks, the first time since 1971. Talking of milestones, the Russell 2000 reached its highest level since April 2022, jumping +2.96% on the week (and +1.05% on Friday), so the rally was fairly broad. But it was tech stocks that led Friday’s sizeable rally, with the Magnificent 7 up +1.27% (+1.74% over the week). A strong earnings beat by Dell Technologies (+31.62% Friday) lifted semiconductor stocks (+4.29%) and saw Nvidia (+4.00%) move above $2trn market cap for the first time. European equities enjoyed a more modest performance last week, with the STOXX 600 near flat (+0.07%) despite a +0.60% rise on Friday. But the German DAX was a standout, as the index shot up to a new all-time after rising +1.81% (and +0.32% on Friday). Friday’s equity strength came despite the downside surprise in the US February manufacturing ISM (at 47.8 vs 49.5 expected). That said, it may have helped markets by increasing expectations of rate cuts, with the amount of Fed cuts expected by December rising +9.4bps last week to 92bps (+6.6bps on Friday). This supported a rally in sovereign bonds with yields on 2yr Treasuries slipping -16.0bps (and -8.8bps on Friday). 10yr Treasury yields fell by -6.7bps (and -6.9bps on Friday). Meanwhile in Europe, flash inflation for February came in hotter-than-expected. Headline HICP slowed to 2.6% year-on-year (just above the 2.5% expected), while core saw a larger upside surprise at 3.1% (vs 2.9% expected). Against this backdrop, investors pared back expectations of ECB rate cuts, with the rate priced in for June rising +5.2bps to 23.2bps (+0.2bps on Friday). This marks the first week since October that less than 25bps of cuts have been priced by June. 10yr bund yields rose +5.1bps (+0.2bps on Friday). In commodities, WTI crude rose to its highest level since October after gaining +2.19% on Friday to $79.97/bbl (+4.55% week-on-week), ahead of OPEC+’s production decision early this month. Last but not least, Friday was a remarkable day for alternative stores of value as gold (+1.89% to $2,083/oz) closed at an all-time high, whilst Bitcoin (+1.89% to $61,921) closed at a two-year high. Tyler Durden Mon, 03/04/2024 - 08:18.....»»

Category: smallbizSource: nyt20 hr. 21 min. ago Related News

Stock market today: Nvidia climbs again but broader rally loses steam

Chipmaker stocks including Nvidia and Micron rose in premarket trading, but US futures slipped as investors await more clarity on interest rates. Nvidia CEO Jensen Huang.I-Hwa Cheng/AFP/Getty Images Chipmaker stocks including Nvidia and Micron Technology rose ahead of Monday's opening bell. But US futures slipped as investors await more clarity on interest rates. Traders will be eyeing Jerome Powell's congressional testimony and key job-market data this week. US-listed chipmaker stocks climbed yet again ahead of Monday's opening bell, but stock futures edged lower in a sign the recent stellar rally could take a breather in the week's first trading session.AI darling Nvidia was up 1.2% shortly after 6 a.m. ET, while Micron Technology climbed 2% and Western Digital rose 2.3% in premarket trading.Meanwhile, futures for the S&P 500, Nasdaq 100, and Dow Jones Industrial Average all slipped by between 0.1% and 0.3% as investors await more clarity about when the Federal Reserve will cut interest rates.Traders now expect the central bank to start slashing borrowing costs in June, according to data from the CME Fedwatch tool, with inflation still running clear of policymakers' 2% target. Jerome Powell's congressional testimony due on Wednesday and Thursday, as well as Friday's non-farm payrolls data, could give the market more clues about the timing of future rate cuts.In London the FTSE 100 index of blue-chip stocks dipped 0.5% to 7,644.9 points in late morning trading.On crypto markets, bitcoin was up almost 6%, or $3,400, to about $64,200 in London trading, closer to its record high of $68,999 hit in November 2021.Brent crude oil was close to $84 a barrel after adding 2% on Friday, while US oil neared $80 after hitting that level on Friday for the first time in about four months.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsider21 hr. 21 min. ago Related News

Super Micro Computer, Deckers Outdoor And Other Big Stocks Moving Higher In Monday"s Pre-Market Session

U.S. stock futures were mixed this morning, with the Dow futures trading lower by around 50 points on Monday. Shares of Super Micro Computer, Inc. (NASDAQ: SMCI) rose sharply in today’s pre-market trading. read more.....»»

Category: blogSource: benzinga22 hr. 33 min. ago Related News

One woman saw the Great Recession coming. Wall Street"s boys club ignored her.

Brooksley Born could have prevented the Great Recession — if only Wall Street had listened. As chair of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, Brooksley Born saw the financial crisis coming. But no one listened. Andrius Banelis for BIThis is an excerpt adapted from "WOMEN MONEY POWER: The Rise and Fall of Economic Equality."When Lehman Brothers filed for bankruptcy in the fall of 2008, jolting an already ailing global economy into near-freefall, the whole world was in shock. But one woman could legitimately have claimed she saw it coming.The story of Brooksley Born is not only the tale of a remarkable regulator whose Cassandra-like warnings — if heeded — could've prevented the great financial crisis from exploding into raging, ruinous enormity. It's also, more broadly, an account of how systemic bias and prejudice created the conditions for a dangerous breed of groupthink to thrive with ultimately disastrous consequences. Understanding what went wrong back then can teach us an important lesson about managing risks in the future: Every voice in the room is worth hearing, even if — and perhaps especially if — the message is inconvenient.Born grew up in California in the 1940s and 1950s and graduated from Stanford University in 1961. She attended Stanford Law School as one of only seven women in her class and was also the first female student ever to be named president of the Stanford Law Review. During her first year, she recalled in an interview years later, one man in the class told her that she was "doing a terrible thing" by taking the place of a man who would have to go to Vietnam and might get killed. At the time, men could be drafted if they weren't able to get a deferment. In 1964, Born graduated first in her class, but the school refused to recommend her for a Supreme Court clerkship. When she managed to convince Associate Justice of the Supreme Court Potter Stewart to meet with her, he told her outright that he simply wasn't ready for a female law clerk.Eventually, Born was offered the opportunity to clerk for Judge Henry Edgerton of the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, paving the way for an associate position at Arnold & Porter, a law firm that today ranks among the largest and most prestigious in the world. Born recalls that she was drawn to the firm in part because it was one of only a handful at the time that had a female partner.Born specialized in institutional and corporate law; complex litigation, mostly in the federal courts; and the regulation of the burgeoning futures market, in which contracts to buy or sell a particular financial asset for delivery at a predetermined time were exchanged. But beyond the global financial system, she also started to foster an interest in the inherent structural inequalities that permeated American society and business and what she, as a lawyer, could do to change that. She could see that the data points were heading the country into a serious set of calamities, each calamity worse than the one before. Born thrived in private practice, but as the daughter of civil servants, she had always dreamed of a government appointment. As she gained prominence in legal circles and academia, she'd become acquainted with the Clintons, so when Bill Clinton won the 1992 presidential election, rumors swirled that Born might be his attorney general pick. It was never a hope she voiced publicly, but it certainly would have been a great honor. But in 1993, Clinton appointed veteran Miami prosecutor Janet Reno for that post, and in 1996 he awarded Born with what many considered to be a consolation prize: chairmanship of the Commodity Futures Trading Commission, a little-known government agency with a few hundred employees that had been created in 1974 to regulate the market for financial derivatives. Born had admittedly hoped for something a little flashier, but she accepted with gratitude and grace.Indisputably, she was qualified. She was deeply analytical, staunchly impartial, and blindly devoted to using her position, knowledge, and skill to ensure that the financial system worked to protect American savers. Crucially, she believed in the power of regulation, and she had an unshakable faith in her ability to recognize when regulation was inadequate."Brooksley had the advantage of knowing the law and understanding the fragility of the system if it weren't regulated," Michael Greenberger, who would later serve as her deputy at the CFTC, said in a magazine interview in 2009. "She could see that the data points, by lack of regulation, were heading the country into a serious set of calamities, each calamity worse than the one before."Not long after she assumed chairmanship of the CFTC, Born started to feel a lingering unease with the rapidly expanding derivatives market. Derivatives allow investors to bet on the trading direction of underlying assets that they "derive" their value from — equities, mortgages, or interest rates, for example — without trading the asset itself. By the mid-1990s, this market was growing at a breakneck pace.Specifically, Born was worried about an explosion in the size of the over-the-counter, or OTC, derivatives market — "the hippopotamus under the rug," as she later came to call it. OTC trades were happening away from public exchanges, quietly and behind closed doors. There was no way of knowing the nature, scope, and true scale of the multi-trillion-dollar market. What had allowed the OTC market to flourish in such an uncontrolled manner was the aggressive deregulation that had occurred in the preceding decades.In 1994, Bankers Trust had come within a whisker of blowing up two of its most important clients — Procter & Gamble and Gibson Greeting Cards — after selling them complex derivatives products that, as it later turned out, were falsely valued. A few years before that, it had emerged that a trader at Japanese bank Sumitomo had spent a decade using derivatives to try to corner the copper market, leading to billions in losses. The memory of that now haunted Born, and she was also starting to hear rumors that companies were using derivatives to manipulate their quarterly financial statements.Unfortunately, her fears weren't shared at the highest echelons of government and the Federal Reserve. In March 1998, Born paid a visit to Robert Rubin, who had served as Treasury secretary since 1995, a period during which the United States had enjoyed remarkable economic growth, near full-employment, and a buoyant stock market, coupled with only moderate inflation. A veteran of Goldman Sachs, Rubin had personally overseen the loosening of regulatory guidelines that had been in place for more than half a century, and he was confident that continued deregulation was the key to national economic prosperity. If Wall Street got too spooked, it would go into meltdown, and it would all be her fault. So to Rubin, Born was more of an inconvenience than anything, and she certainly wasn't in his club. "She had no sense of the smooth collegiality that characterized the top policymakers of the Clinton administration," journalist Michael Hirsh wrote in his 2010 book, "Capital Offense: How Washington's Wise Men Turned America's Future Over to Wall Street." "So what if she was running a nominally independent agency? She had no sense of place, no respect for who they were."Similarly, when Alan Greenspan sat atop the Federal Reserve, Born's opinions were just as unpopular. Greenspan, an eccentric and often enigmatic, mostly self-taught economist who ended up presiding over the Fed for more than 18 years, had begun his career as a worshiper of philosopher and novelist Ayn Rand. He was as devoted to free-market capitalism as Rubin, and Born was an unwelcome voice in his ear.According to Hirsh's book, Greenspan invited Born to lunch when she first took over at the CFTC in 1996, during which she voiced her concerns about the lax regulation in some of the most opaque but sprawling corners of the financial market. "Well, Brooksley, I guess you and I will never agree about fraud," Greenspan reportedly told her, to which Born wondered out loud what, exactly, there was to not agree upon."Well, you probably will always believe there should be laws against fraud, and I don't think there is any need for it," Greenspan replied, as reported by Hirsh. Born was gobsmacked.Quoting an unnamed Fed official, Hirsh wrote that staffers under Greenspan privately thought of Born as "a lightweight wacko." Born, for her part, knew that she wasn't, and would never be, one of "them." She was a lawyer, not an economist, and, most obviously, she was a woman. But that didn't dent her resolve to do her job properly, and at that moment she considered that to mean pulling out all the stops to prevent the derivatives market from blowing up in a cataclysmic fashion.But whatever she said or did, Rubin and Greenspan didn't want to hear about her sleepless nights or her predictions about an impending crisis. They had grown up on Wall Street during an era when braggadocian machismo was a character trait that led to success, and when women never dreamed of expressing an opinion on something as complex as the financial markets. Born headed up an agency that was so obscure, it was housed in a rented space in the commercial district of downtown Washington. As far as they were concerned, she held no real sway in the hallowed halls of government and financial policymaking. They were not about to let her waste their time. With the Asian financial crisis well underway, and contagion a real risk, they had more important matters to deal with, and at least for the time being, it certainly looked like they had America on their side. Greenspan was regularly referred to as the "wizard of monetary policy." In early 1999, Time magazine would run a cover story lauding Rubin, Greenspan, and Lawrence Summers, who was deputy Treasury secretary, as the "Committee to Save the World," heroes of the free market: the "three marketeers."Finally, in the late spring of 1998, Born started to act. Under her guidance, the CFTC started preparing what's known as a concept release, an invitation for members of the public to submit comments on the relevance and appropriateness of existing regulation of the OTC derivatives market, which by that time was estimated to have a value of about 29 trillion dollars. A concept release is often a precursor to a formal regulatory proposal, and news that Born was drafting this one shook some of the most influential institutions in Washington to the core. Lawrence Summers reportedly called her in a panicked rage to warn her what would happen if she kept pushing: If Wall Street got too spooked, it would go into meltdown, and it would all be her fault.The following month Rubin, Greenspan, and Arthur Levitt, the chairman of the Securities and Exchange Commission, came face-to-face with Born on the matter during a meeting of the president's Working Group on Financial Markets, of which they were all members. Rubin cut to the chase. Born was playing a dangerous game, he suggested. If the concept release were to be published, markets might be sent into a tailspin, fueled by uncertainty over what might be about to happen. But aside from that, Rubin argued, Born and the CFTC didn't even have jurisdiction to make decisions about this kind of regulation in this particular market. That, Born countered, was ridiculous.WOMEN MONEY POWER: The Rise and Fall of Economic Equality by Josie Cox.Abrams PressShortly after the meeting, Greenspan, Rubin, and Levitt published a rare joint statement underscoring their "grave concerns" about the CFTC proposal. Summers, for his part, argued that Born even so much as drawing attention to the possibility that something needed to change in that particular corner of the market would cast "a shadow of regulatory uncertainty over an otherwise thriving market." They might have thought that grilling her at the Working Group on Financial Markets had served to silence her, but they were wrong. In May, Born circulated the concept release. Rubin was incensed, and Born recalls it triggering a "firestorm of opposition." By some accounts, Rubin never spoke to her again.The war entered its next battle. One morning and without warning, Born was summoned by staffers for Jim Leach, who chaired the House banking committee, and the chair of the agriculture committee, Richard Lugar, to appear on the Hill, where she was berated yet again for stepping out of line. It was the first of several hearings during which Born tried desperately yet as calmly as possible to explain why she, the chair of a small and relatively toothless agency, was terrified of what might be going on in the derivatives market.Even in the autumn of that year, as a massive hedge fund, Long-Term Capital Management, which had two Nobel laureates on its board of directors, almost collapsed under the weight of trillions of dollars of derivative bets gone wrong, no one — it seemed — was prepared to take Born seriously. As Bethany McLean and Joe Nocera write in their 2011 book about the financial crisis, "If there was a moment when Bob Rubin could have used his immense stature to do something about the derivatives problem ... this was it."It was clear, by this point, that Born had fired all the shots in her arsenal. One last time she pleaded with the House banking committee to do something about "the unknown risks that the over-the-counter derivatives market may pose to the US economy," including credit default swaps. She referenced an "immediate and pressing need to address whether there are unacceptable regulatory gaps." But she was a lone wolf. Not long after, Treasury officials lobbied Congress to pass legislation preventing the CFTC from being able to regulate the OTC derivatives market. Congress responded by barring the commission from enacting any regulation along these lines for six months. In January 1999 Born wrote to President Clinton informing him that she would not be seeking reappointment for a second term atop the CFTC and would be returning to Arnold & Porter instead.Born's Cassandra-like warnings, it seemed, were quickly forgotten. Even in 2001, as Enron — which had helped create the global market for energy-based derivatives — was forced to file the largest corporate bankruptcy in American history, regulators didn't change their tune. In fact, as President George W. Bush assumed office, a fresh enthusiasm for Reaganomics and deregulation swept across Washington. Leverage was king.Born retired from private practice in 2003. Five years later, she watched from a distance as the unregulated derivatives market that had caused her so many sleepless nights sent the value of financial assets around the world into free fall, bringing economies to their knees and crushing global banks. In the months and years that followed, it became increasingly hard to deny that the multi-trillion-dollar OTC derivatives market was the root cause of the great financial crisis."It helped foment a mortgage crisis, then a credit crisis, and finally a once-in-a-century systemic financial crisis that, but for huge US taxpayer interventions, would have in the fall of 2008 led the world economy into a devastating depression," Michael Greenberger stated as he testified at a Financial Crisis Inquiry Commission hearing in June 2010. As the US economy soared, the powerful trio of men wasn't inclined to entertain the idea that they might be doing something wrong. Even Alan Greenspan, testifying before a congressional committee in late 2008, admitted that the crisis had exposed a "flaw" in the economic philosophy and ideology that had guided him for years. "I made a mistake in presuming that the self-interests of organizations, specifically banks and others, were such that they were best capable of protecting their own shareholders and their equity in the firms," Greenspan said.It's impossible not to wonder why no one with the ability and power to make a difference truly took Born's warnings to heart. It's certainly reasonable to conclude that sexism played a part. In a 2009 "Frontline" episode, Arthur Levitt, the former chairman of the SEC and an erstwhile vehement opponent of Born, admitted that the crisis had, for him, catalyzed a change of heart. He felt different now than back when he was pitted against Born during those bitter battles in Washington. "I've come to know her as one of the most capable, dedicated, intelligent, and committed public servants," he said. "I wish I knew her better in Washington," he added. "I could have done much better. I could have made a difference."In 2012, Lauren Rivera, a professor at Northwestern's Kellogg School of Management, published research on hiring processes at 120 major employers, a third of which were banks. Rivera's research concluded that hiring is "one of those critical gatekeeping moments whereby the judgments we make about people have enduring effects." On the back of her findings, she coined the term "Looking Glass Merit" to describe the unconscious tendency that we as humans have to define merit in a way that is self-validating.It's not hard to understand how this phenomenon might have been at play here. Born was distinct. In a sea of economists and politicians in Washington, she was a lawyer. In the President's Working Group on Financial Markets meeting, she was the odd one out, because she sat atop a relatively obscure agency. She didn't grow up on Wall Street, like so many others in government did, and, perhaps most important, she was a woman.When Alan Greenspan, Robert Rubin, and Lawrence Summers batted her concerns aside, they were likely demonstrating confirmation bias — a human instinct or heuristic impulse to seek out and attribute value to evidence that supports our underlying belief about something and to disregard information that might discredit it. As the US economy soared, the powerful trio of men wasn't inclined to entertain the idea that they might be doing something wrong and that the deregulation they had championed for so many years was setting the market up for disaster.In a blog post published a decade after the crisis, in September 2018, Christine Lagarde, who at the time was managing director of the International Monetary Fund, described the great financial crisis as "a sobering lesson in groupthink." She wrote that in the years since the collapse of Lehman Brothers and other major financial institutions, policy has addressed the flaws in the system that ultimately led to the crisis. But there's one thing that's not changed much, she contended, and that's culture.She added that "the true legacy" of that crisis cannot yet be adequately assessed because it's "still being written." More than 15 years on, and with far more women in positions of power across business, politics, and elsewhere, it may be too early to tell whether the lessons from that crisis have all been internalized. Would a Brooksley Born today be able to avert a financial meltdown? One hopes so, but it may take another crisis to know for sure.Josie Cox is a journalist who has written for Reuters, The Wall Street Journal, The Washington Post, and The Guardian. She is the author of "WOMEN MONEY POWER: The Rise and Fall of Economic Equality."Excerpt adapted from WOMEN MONEY POWER by Josie Cox. Copyright © 2024 Josie Cox. Used by permission of Abrams Press, an imprint of ABRAMS, New York. All rights reserved.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderMar 4th, 2024Related News

Shiba Inu Rings Greed Alarm as Bitcoin Eyes Record High

Open interest in SHIB futures has crossed above $100 million, hinting at speculative froth......»»

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Sea, AeroVironment And 3 Stocks To Watch Heading Into Monday

With U.S. stock futures trading higher this morning on Monday, some of the stocks that may grab investor focus today are as follows: read more.....»»

Category: blogSource: benzingaMar 4th, 2024Related News

Sea, AeroVironment And 3 Stocks To Watch Heading Into Monday

With U.S. stock futures trading higher this morning on Monday, some of the stocks that may grab investor focus today are as follows: Wall Street expects Sea Limited (NYSE: SE) to report a quarterly loss at 27 cents per share on revenue of $3.55 billion before the opening bell, according to data from Benzinga Pro. Sea shares fell 0.3% to $50.90 in after-hours trading. Analysts are expecting AeroVironment, Inc. (NASDAQ: AVAV) ...Full story available on Benzinga.com.....»»

Category: earningsSource: benzingaMar 4th, 2024Related News

Shiba Inu Rings Greed Alarm As Bitcoin Eyes Record High

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These Are The Best And Worst Performing Assets Of February And YTD 2024

These Are The Best And Worst Performing Assets Of February And YTD 2024 As DB's Henry Allen writes, February was another very strong month for risk assets, with many major world equity indices hitting fresh record highs. That included the S&P 500, which surpassed the 5,000 mark for the first time, as well as the Nikkei, which surpassed its previous record from 1989. In part, that was because of continued excitement around AI, and the Magnificent 7 posted their best performance in 9 months. However, with inflation still above target and surprising on the upside in the US, investors pushed out the timing of future rate cuts, and sovereign bonds lost further ground. In addition, US regional banks continued to struggle, as investor concerns persisted about commercial real estate. As for cryptocurrencies and bitcoin which soared almost 50% in February after the launch of bitcoin ETFs, well, don't get Elizabeth Warren started. Month in Review - The high-level macro overview February had several ongoing stories that were relevant for markets. 1. The first was that global data was still robust for the most part, and hopes for a soft landing continued. For instance, the US jobs report for January showed nonfarm payrolls up by +353k, along with positive revisions to the previous two months. Moreover, the ISM manufacturing print hit a 15-month high. But even as growth remained strong, there were further upside surprises on inflation, which raised fears that the path back to target was unlikely to be a smooth one, and raised questions as to whether the economy would face a “no landing”. In particular, the US core CPI print for January came in at a monthly +0.4%, which pushed the 3-month annualised rate for core CPI up to +4.0%. With inflation above target and growth remaining strong, that led investors to push out the timing of future rate cuts once again. At the Fed, futures moved from pricing 146bps of cuts by the December meeting, to 85bps, a reduction of 61bps over February. In addition, they pushed out the likely timing of the first rate cut to the June meeting. As a result, sovereign bond yields rose further, and US Treasuries (-1.4%) posted their worst monthly performance since September. Similarly in the Euro Area, investors reduced the expected cuts by December from 160bps to 91bps, and Euro sovereign bonds fell -1.2%. Lastly in Japan, expectations grew that the BoJ might end the negative interest rate policy as early as April, and yields on 2yr JGBs were up +9.7bps to 0.17%, marking their highest level since 2011. 2. The second important story was the ongoing excitement around AI, which led to a fresh outperformance from the Magnificent 7. They were up +12.1% in total return terms, which was their best monthly performance since May 2023, and Nvidia surged by a further +28.6%, which followed their strong earnings release towards the end of the month. That helped to power the overall S&P 500 (+5.3%) to a 4th consecutive monthly advance, although the rally continued to be a narrow one, with the equal-weighted S&P 500 up by a smaller +4.2% in February. 3. Third, the concerns about commercial real estate continued, particularly at the start of February. That came after New York Community Bancorp reported a loss on January 31 as they raised their expected loan losses on commercial real estate. This raised fears that the full consequences from higher interest rates are still yet to materialise, particularly give the amount of debt that needs refinancing over 2024 and 2025. For markets, it meant that US regional banks lost further ground, with the KBW Regional Banking Index down another -2.8%, bringing its YTD decline to -9.5%. New York Community Bancorp led those declines, with a -25.2% return in February, taking its YTD decline to -52.7%. Which assets saw the biggest gains in February? Equities: Excitement about AI and strong growth data helped global equities advance for a 4th consecutive month, with the S&P 500 (+5.3%) and the STOXX 600 (+2.0%) both rising. Asian indices saw the largest gains, with the Nikkei up +8.0%, and the Shanghai Comp (+8.1%) had its best monthly performance since November 2022. US Dollar : As investors pushed out the timing of future rate cuts, the dollar index rose for a second consecutive month, rising +0.9%. Moreover, the dollar strengthened against every G10 currency apart from the Swedish Krona. Oil : Despite the losses for other commodities, oil prices rose for a second consecutive month, with Brent crude up +2.3%, and WTI up +3.2%. Cryptocurrencies : It was a very strong month for cryptocurrencies, with Bitcoin (+44.7%) seeing its best monthly performance since December 2020, ending the month at $61,431. Which assets saw the biggest losses in February? Sovereign Bonds : As investors pushed out the timing of rate cuts, sovereign bonds saw further losses. That included US Treasuries (-1.4%), Euro sovereigns (-1.2%) and gilts (-1.3%) Japanese Yen : The Japanese Yen weakened a further -2.0% against the US Dollar in February, leaving it as the worst-performing G10 currency on a YTD basis, having now weakened -6.0% since the start of the year. Commodities (except oil) : Several commodities saw significant declines in February. European natural gas was down -17.8%, marking a fourth consecutive monthly decline. Copper (-1.8%) also lost ground after three monthly gains, whilst agricultural goods including wheat (-3.0%), corn (-7.3%) and soybeans (-7.7%) fell back as well. Finally, here are the charts summarizing major asset performance in February in local currency and USD... ... and YTD. Tyler Durden Sun, 03/03/2024 - 15:30.....»»

Category: personnelSource: nytMar 3rd, 2024Related News