Tag Archives: Bonds

How to Survive the “Deep State”, by Doug Casey

The deep state will be your enemy, not your friend, when collapse finally arrives. From Doug Casey at internationalman.com:

Almost everyone looks for a political solution to problems. However, once a Deep State situation has taken over, only a revolution or a dictatorship can turn it around, and probably only in a small country.

Maybe you’re thinking you should get behind somebody like Ron Paul (I didn’t say Rand Paul), should such a person materialize. That would be futile.

Here’s what would happen in the totally impossible scenario that this person was elected and tried to act like a Lee Kuan Yew or an Augusto Pinochet against the Deep State:

First, there would be a “sit-down” with the top dogs of the Praetorian agencies and a bunch of Pentagon officers to explain the way things work.

Then, should he survive, he would be impeached by the running dogs of Congress.

Then, should he survive, whipped dog Americans would revolt at the prospect of having their doggy dishes broken.

Remember, your fellow Americans not only elected Obama, but re-elected him. Do you expect they’ll be more rational as the Greater Depression deepens? Maybe you think the police and the military will somehow help. Forget it…they’re part of the problem. They’re here to protect and serve their colleagues first, then their employer (the State), and only then the public. But the whipped dog likes to parrot: “Thank you for your service.” Which is further proof that there’s no hope.

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Gundlach: “Intense” Downturn Means “Helicopter Money” Is Coming, by Martin Luscher

Jeffrey Gundlach is one of the world’s most astute bond fund managers and economic prognosticators. From Martin Luscher at Finanz und Wirtscaft via zerohedge.com:

Central banks are easing, and stocks have reached a record high. But that doesn’t mean that everything is okay. Jeffrey Gundlach sees big trouble ahead. The CEO of the investment firm DoubleLine is worried about the development of corporate debt. But also the levels of government debt and the US equity markets are not sustainable. According to Gundlach, investors have to brace for significant disruptions.

Mr. Gundlach, what would you recommend to investors?

They need to position themselves for the next global downturn because it will lead to substantial changes in the markets.

When will the downturn come?

It doesn’t matter whether it comes in one year or four. If you don’t start preparing now, you will maybe do better while the economy continues to do okay, but whatever gain you get from that will be overwhelmed by problems with your investments in the downturn.

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If Michael Burry Is Right, Here Is How To Trade The Coming Index Fund Disaster, by Tyler Durden

Michael Burry was one of the heroes of Michael Lewis’s book The Big Short. Now he’s got another big short. From Tyler Durden at zerohedge.com:

Last week, the Big Short’s Michael Burry sparked a fresh wave of outrage among the Gen-Z and algo traders (if not so much the handful of humans who have actually witnessed a bear market) on Wall Street, by calling the darling of modern capital markets – passive, or index/ETF, investing – the next CDO bubble. Echoing what many skeptics before him have said, Burry argued that record passive inflows, coupled with active fund outflows which suggest passive equity funds will surpass active by 2022 according to BofA…

… are distorting prices for stocks and bonds in much the same way that CDOs did for subprime mortgages. Eventually, the flows will reverse at some point, and when they do, “it will be ugly.”

This nascent passive bubble is also why Burry had avoided large caps and was focusing entirely on small-cap value stocks: to Burry, they tend to be underrepresented in index funds, or left out entirely, which is why they are i) cheap and also why ii) when the passive bubble bursts, they will be the few names left standing.

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It’s official: the Federal Reserve is insolvent, by Simon Black

By mark-to-market accounting, or as it’s sometimes known, honest accounting, the Fed’s losses on its bond portfolio are greater than it’s capital. In other words, it’s broke. From Simon Black at sovereignman.com:

In the year 1157, the Republic of Venice was in the midst of war and in desperate need of funds.

It wasn’t the first time in history that a government needed to borrow money to fight a war. But the Venetians came up with an innovative idea:

Every citizen who loaned money to the government was to receive an official paper certificate guaranteeing that the state would make interest payments.

Those certificates could then be transferred to other people… and the government would make payments to whoever held the certificate at the time.

In this way, the loan that an investor made to the government essentially became an asset– one that he could sell to another investor in the future.

This was the first real government bond. And the idea ultimately created a robust market of investors who would buy and sell these securities.

When a government’s fortunes changed and its ability to make interest payments was in doubt, the price of the bond fell. When confidence was high, bond prices rose.

It’s not much different today. Governments still borrow money by issuing bonds, and those bonds trade in a robust marketplace where countless investors buy and sell on a daily basis.

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Notice How Quickly Market Psychology Changed? by John Rubino

Two financial market truisms: markets can change on a dime, and they go down quicker than they go up. From John Rubino at dollarcollapse.com:

“How did you go bankrupt?”
“Two ways. Gradually, then suddenly.”
― Ernest Hemingway, The Sun Also Rises

On the surface, nothing much changed last week. The Fed, as expected, raised short-term interest rates very modestly, the US, Canada and Mexico cut a new NAFTA deal (kind of a pleasant surprise), unemployment fell again, Trump continued to tweet while Democrats and Republicans continued to express their mutual disdain via dirty tricks and contrived insults. Business as usual, in other words, in our dysfunctional new normal.

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As Musk Goes Nuts Publicly, Tesla Bondholders Get Antsy, by Wolf Richter

Bondholders usually get nervous about failing companies before stockholders. That looks to be the case with Tesla. From Wolf Richter at wolfstreet.com:

In terms of Tesla’s survival, this poses a problem.

Tesla shares fell 2.8% to $280.74 on Wednesday. They’re now down about $100 from the closing price of August 7 ($379.57) and down $107 from the high that day ($387.46). This was the moment when CEO Elon Musk had pulled another rabbit out of the hat during trading hours in order to brazenly manipulate up the share price by announcing a blatant lie – that he’d take the company private at $420 a share, “funding secured.” Today, shares closed $140 below the buyout-lie number.

The ludicrousness of his lie that had instantly spread all over the world had an unintended consequence for eons to come: The term “funding secured” can never again be pronounced with a straight face.

As a consequence, Tesla is now steeped in legal issues. It’s not like it doesn’t have enough issues already, with its “manufacturing hell,” as Musk himself called it, that refuses to abate.

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Will The Real Bond King Stand Up? by The Global Macro Monitor

Jeff Gundlach, the best bond fund manager in America, is short-term bullish, long-term bearish on bonds. From The Global Macro monitor at macromon.wordpress.com:

We get it.

Jeff Gundlach (we are some of his biggest fans) is a trader at heart, as are we, and is very cognizant of short-term market technicals.

He recently tweeted,

However, it was only June he stated

So it’s eye-catching, then, that Gundlach reiterated in a webcast on Tuesday his call that the 10-year Treasury yield would rise to 6 percent by 2020 or 2021. “We’re right on track” for that, he said. As a reminder, that would be the highest yield since 2000.

His reasoning is fairly straightforward. The combination of rising U.S. interest rates and fiscal deficits is like a “suicide mission,” he said in the webcast, escalating the intensity from last month when he referred to the trend as a “pretty dangerous cocktail.” Ultimately, the debt burden will rise to such a level that borrowing costs will surge, in his estimation. That hasn’t happened yet because ultra-low German yields are capping how much Treasuries can sell off.   Bloomberg

Wow,  6 frickin’ percent!

Two Views Are Consistent

We are with Jeff.

In the near term, the bond shorts may be scorched (or may not) with their record off-side position but given time long-term interest rates are going much higher than the markets believe.  Deteriorating flow technicals will bring term premia back with a vengeance.

European Bond Bubble

The trigger will most likely be the bursting of the European bond bubble.

The Portuguese 10-year trading at half the yield of the 10-year U.S. Treasury?   Come on, man,   Are you serious?

When Super Mario takes his foot off the pedal, turn out the lights on those holding the Spanish 2-year at -0.327 percent, or the 10-year bund at 0.34 percent.

To continue reading: Will The Real Bond King Stand Up?