The calls will be completely sold as well as good chunks of the two levered ETFs.
We'll get back to it next
Rich food importers are acquiring vast tracts of poor countries' farmland. Is this beneficial foreign investment or neocolonialism?
Supporters of such deals argue they provide new seeds, techniques and money for agriculture, the basis of poor countries’ economies, which has suffered from disastrous underinvestment for decades.
Opponents call the projects “land grabs”, claim the farms will be insulated from host countries and argue that poor farmers will be pushed off land they have farmed for generations.
In total, says the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI), a think-tank in Washington, DC, between 15m and 20m hectares of farmland in poor countries have been subject to transactions or talks involving foreigners since 2006. That is the size of France’s agricultural land and a fifth of all the farmland of the European Union.
What is happening, argues Richard Ferguson, an analyst for Nomura Securities, is outsourcing’s third great wave, following that of manufacturing in the 1980s and information technology in the 1990s.
I'd expect dead cat bounces in both metals perhaps next week (inversely, the dollar is due for a rest/consolidation at some point), but both have broken their 50 day moving averages, so until proven otherwise I'd expect them to pull back over the intermediate term, rebuild a new base, and then when the dollar weakens again, start a new move up. But that won't be a 2009 event. For now, time is money and the tide has turned. If you believe in the absolute correlation between the dollar and precious metals, this type of break down in the metals should bode well for the dollar in the near term as well
I will take some long exposure off the table (on the index instruments) as we reach over S&P 1129. This is a "grind up", not "break out" type of move in the market. I expect any 'correction' to be mild - if it is allowed to happen - and to hold S&P 1120 as we outlined in the weekly summary.
As we have seen so illustriously over the past year, all Ponzi schemes eventually fail under their own weight. The US debt scheme is no different. 2009 has been witness to spectacular government intervention in almost all levels of the economy. This support requires outside capital to facilitate, and relies heavily on the US government’s ability to raise money in the debt market. The fact that the Federal Reserve and US Treasury cannot identify the second largest buyer of treasury securities this year proves that the traditional buyers are not keeping pace with the US government’s deficit spending. It makes us wonder if it’s all just a Ponzi scheme.
At the end of the day, flushing more debt through the system is the only lever policy-makers know how to pull. Lower interest rates, quantitative easing, deficit spending, it’s all the same. It’s all borrowing against future income. Each time we bump up against recession, we borrow a bit more to keep the economy going. With garden variety recessions, this can work. Everyone wants the good times to continue, so no one demands debts be paid back. Creditors accept more IOUs and economic “growth” continues apace. If it sounds like Bernie Madoff’s Ponzi scheme, that’s because it is.
Each time Bernie’s scam got a few too many investor withdrawals, he’d simply plug the hole by raising more investor cash. The guys at Fairfield Greenwich were making so much in fees, they were happy to funnel more his way. But at a certain point, Ponzis get too big. There simply aren’t enough new investors to pay off older ones. In the aggregate, the same is true for Western economies. Their debt loads are now so huge, they are simply unpayable.
Naturally, policy-makers sound just like Ponzi-schemers: Just give us a little more cash to get us through this rough patch and everything will be copacetic. Ben Bernkanke at the National Press Club alluded to the famous quote by St. Augustine: “Oh Lord, give me chastity, but do not give it yet.” President Obama convened his “fiscal responsibility” summit days after passing the stimulus bill and days before proposing huge increases in health care spending.
Bernanke says he’ll stop printing money to absorb debts, and he may for a time. But the American Ponzi has grown so large, the private credit system is, IMHO, no longer capable of generating sufficient debt finance to keep it going. So to avoid a debt deflationary depression the Fed will have to rev up its printing press again.
Japan has been wrestling with its own Ponzi collapse for 20 years, keeping it at bay with trillions of dollars worth of deficit spending and money printing. Hasn’t worked for them and it won’t work for us.