Tuesday, November 30, 2010

No update today

Quick Overview

  • [William Sawyer], the [veteran] Florida toxicologist, said the government tests do not look for total petroleum hydrocarbons in the seafood. He said his tests of Gulf shrimp have shown unsafe levels of the compounds, which can cause liver or kidney damage in a matter of weeks.

  • U.S. consumer confidence rose to 54.1 in November.

  • The Chicago purchasing managers index rose to 62.5 in November from 60.6 in October.

  • U.S. Single-family home prices fell 0.7% in September: S&P/Case-Shiller

  • Gold / Silver futures rose to a two-week high on Europe’s escalating debt woes

  • India said it may allow sugar exports next month.

  • China's Purchasing Managers Index at 55.2  forecast  54.7

Monday, November 29, 2010

Quick Overview

  • YoY Sweden's GDP rose 6.9% in Q3.

  • The Chicago Fed's Midwest Mfg Index rose 0.7% to 80.9, the highest reading since July

  • U.K. house prices fell 0.8% MoM in November and were 1.1% lower YoY.

  • Japanese retail sales fell 0.2% in October, the government said Monday, marking the first fall after nine consecutive monthly rises.

  • Iran Nuclear Scientist Assassinated; Another Injured.

  • Calm in the markets brought by the EU’s €85bn bail-out for Ireland quickly faded as fears returned about the spread of the debt crisis to Portugal and Spain.

  • (Guardian) A hellish vision of a world warmed by 4C within a lifetime has been set out by an international team of scientists, who say the agonisingly slow progress of the global climate change talks that restart in Mexico today makes the so-called safe limit of 2C impossible to keep. A 4C rise in the planet's temperature would see severe droughts across the world and millions of migrants seeking refuge as their food supplies collapse

  • (Guardian) Scientists claim to be a step closer to reversing the ageing process after rejuvenating worn out organs in elderly mice. The experimental treatment developed by researchers at Harvard Medical School turned weak and feeble old mice into healthy animals by regenerating their aged bodies.

  • Japan's October jobless rate 5.1%.
  • Czarnikow cut its global cane-sugar production forecast to 134.5 million tons from 137.9 million tons in August.
  • India’s economy grew at 8.9% in Q2

Saturday, November 27, 2010

EU rescue costs start to threaten Germany itself
"Germany cannot keep paying for bail-outs without going bankrupt itself," said Professor Wilhelm Hankel, of Frankfurt University. "This is frightening people. You cannot find a bank safe deposit box in Germany because every single one has already been taken and stuffed with gold and silver. It is like an underground Switzerland within our borders. People have terrible memories of 1948 and 1923 when they lost their savings."

Quick Overview

  • Brazilian navy plans a fleet of 20 subs, six nuclear powered.

  • The U.S. Justice Department filed a brief that declared, for the first time, that the U.S. government does not support the patenting of naturally occurring human genes. (About time)

  • (FT)Bullion prices denominated in Euros hit a five-month high as concerns about the Eurozone sovereign debt crisis swept across financial markets.

  • Weekly U.S. jobless claims drop to 407,000, the lowest level since July 2008.

  • The Reuters/University of Michigan consumer sentiment index rose to 71.6 in November from 67.7 in October, its highest reading since June.

  • The DOE reported:
  • Crude-oil inventories rose 1 million barrels
  • Supplies of distillates fell 500,000 barrels
  • Gasoline stocks rose 1.9 million barrels

  • U.S. sales of new single-family homes fell 8.1% in October. There was an 8.6-month supply of homes at the current sales rate. The median sales price fell 14% to $194,900. Sales fell 23.9% in the West, 20.4% in the Midwest and 12.1% in the Northeast. In the South sales gained 3.1%.

  • The IGC left world wheat production estimates unchanged at 644 MMT, but raised consumption by 2 MMT to 660 MMT. Global ending stocks are expected down 16 MMT from last season.

  • The IGC cut world corn output by 4 MMT from last month to 810 MMT, with ending stocks pegged at 121 MMT, 31 MMT down from last season. World inventories will end 2010-11 at the equivalent of 14.4% of consumption, compared with 18.7% at the close of last season, and tighter than the 16.1% at the end of 2006-07.
  • The IGC’s estimate for the world rice harvest was kept at a record 449m tonnes.

  • Portugal has, in the face of a squeeze on raw sugar supplies, urged the European Union to relax its import regime, warning that the region has overestimated available supplies of the sweetener.

  • (Reuters) - Argentina's 2010/11 soy output is estimated at 49.5 million tons down from 54.5 MMT last year.

  • Across multiple studies, a consistent link was identified between glucose levels and aggression, with sugar consumption making people less prone to unprovoked hostility toward strangers. Additionally, researchers found that U.S. states with higher rates of diabetes — a disorder characterized by low glucose and poor glucose tolerance — were plagued by higher rates of violent crime, even after factoring for poverty.

  • (Bloomberg) -- Global sugar supplies may fall short of demand next year as Brazil, the world’s largest exporter of the sweetener, razes and replants enough farmland to cover the state of Connecticut.

  • China on Friday reported a further slowdown in industrial profit growth due in part to the nation's ongoing campaign to save energy and cut emissions. Profits of major industrial enterprises in 24 provinces grew 51.6 percent in the first 10 months year on year to 2.8 trillion Yuan (427.1 billion U.S. dollars), 1.9 percentage points lower than that for Jan-Sept, the National Bureau of Statistics said on its website.
  • In the first nine months, industrial profits decelerated by 2.8 percentage points from the Jan-Aug period. Core business revenue of those enterprises rose by 32.1 percent year on year to 45.3 trillion Yuan in the first 10 months.

  • According to the Bank of Korea (BOK), the current account stood at 5.37 billion U.S. dollars in October, rising from 3.95 billion U.S. dollars in September.

  • YoY Singapore's manufacturing output increased 31.0 % in October.

  • Consumer prices in Japan fell 0.6 % in October, the Japanese government said on Friday.

  • Russia says they will import wheat in 2011.

  • (Economist)... the Fed has only succeeded in raising America’s broad money supply (as measured by seasonally-adjusted M2) to about $8.8 trillion. China’s central bankers, on the other hand, have increased China’s M2 to almost 70 trillion Yuan, or $10.5 trillion. As Mr. Kroeber points out, China has a greater quantity of money circulating in an economy a third of the size. Who is calling whom easy?

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Next Update Sunday Nov. 28

Quick Overview

  • China's demand for vegetable oils will "rise sizably" despite efforts to slow its economy, Oil World says.

  • Nearly 70% of American mayors are cutting back on road maintenance and projects as a result of the prolonged economic downturn, according to a new survey of mayors coast-to-coast commissioned by Reader's Digest and conducted by Harris Interactive.

  • Borrowing costs for Portugal and Spain have surged to danger levels on fears that Europe's leaders are losing political control of the Irish crisis and have yet to agree on a coherent plan to tackle the euro zone’s deeper debt woes.

  • Sales of U.S. existing homes fall 2.2% in October.

  • U.S. third-quarter GDP revised to 2.5% growth.

  • Gold prices rose as fears of escalating tension on the Korean peninsula and spreading sovereign jitters in Europe drove investors to seek safety.

  • The Russian government will start selling grain from the state intervention fund if domestic grain prices rise to 7,000-8,000 rubles ($224-256) per ton, First Deputy Prime Minister Viktor Zubkov said Tuesday. The current price for grain stood at 6,000 rubles ($192).

Monday, November 22, 2010

Portugal next as EMU's Máquina Infernal keeps ticking
The eurozone will face its moment of existential danger the day that Portugal is forced to tap the EU bail-out fund. A third rescue in months will push the combined bill towards €300bn (£257bn) and risk exhausting the political capital of EMU, leaving little left for Spain even if the European Financial Stability Facility can in theory handle one more domino

Quick Overview

  • Investors question whether international efforts to halt a full-blown Eurozone debt crisis are enough.

  • The new Basel III banking rules will leave the biggest U.S. banks short of between $100 billion and $150 billion in equity capital, with 90 per cent of the shortfall concentrated in the top six banks, the Financial Times said.

  • Singaporeans are the most optimistic consumers in the region, according to the latest Asian Consumer Confidence Index. The index rose 11 points to 137 in Q3.

  • Soybeans rose on dry weather in parts of Brazil.

  • Precious metals will produce the best commodity returns next year, Goldman Sachs said.

  • (Bloomberg) -- Billionaire Warren Buffett said that rich people should pay more in taxes and that Bush-era tax cuts for top earners should be allowed to expire at the end of December.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Quick Overview

  • India may produce 8.7 % less Sugar than estimated as rain pests and disease reduce yields.

  • (FT) Top mints have seen their silver coin sales jump to record or near-record levels.

  • Union Pacific will increase its dividend by 15% to 38 cents.

  • The Philly Fed diffusion index rose to 22.5 in November from 1.0 in October.

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Why America will come to regret the craven deal Obama is offering Netanyahu.
By Christopher Hitchens

This craven impotence will be noticed elsewhere, and by some very undesirable persons

Quick Overview

  • China may impose temporary price controls on “important daily necessities” to counter the fastest inflation in two years, the State Council said today on its website.
  • (Price controls have never increased supply! Today the price of corn on the CBOT is $5.25 and $8.10 on the Dalian)
  • (Arlan Suderman) There is trade speculation that China may be manipulating the markets to buy large quantities of corn and soybeans before the end of the year.

  • The UN warns the world must be vigilant against further supply shocks and prepare for even higher food prices next year if cereal production fails to increase significantly.

  • US consumer price inflation rose just 0.2 % in October.

  • The DOE said:
  • Crude-oil inventories fell 7.3 million barrels
  • Gasoline inventories fell 2.7 million barrels
  • Distillates inventories fell 1.1 million barrels

  • Demand for gold hit 922 metric tons in Q3, a 12% increase YoY, a trade group said.

  • Fed Chairman Ben Bernanke told lawmakers the Fed's $600 billion economic aid program could create 700,000 jobs over two years.

  • Buffett has written a 'Thank You' note to 'Uncle Sam' for preventing a catastrophic economic meltdown in September of 2008

  • [AP] - The nation's largest banks must undergo new stress tests to show they can weather another recession, and the Fed said those that pass them can boost dividends paid to investors.

  • U.S. New home starts fell 11.7% in October to an annualized rate of 519,000 -- the lowest rate in 18 months.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The horrible truth starts to dawn on Europe's leaders
He is admitting that the gamble of launching a premature and dysfunctional currency without a central treasury, or debt union, or economic government, to back it up – and before the economies, legal systems, wage bargaining practices, productivity growth, and interest rate sensitivity, of North and South Europe had come anywhere near sustainable convergence – may now backfire horribly.

Monday, November 15, 2010

Quick Overview

  • (Bloomberg) China may impose price limits on food and toughen punishment of those found speculating on agriculture futures including corn and cotton to combat rising inflation, the China Securities Journal reported

  • Korea raised rates by 0.25 points.

  • U.S. retail sales grew 1.2% in October.

  • Conditions for manufacturers in the New York area deteriorated sharply in November, with a New York Fed survey turning negative for the first time since June 2009.

  • (Bloomberg) The International Monetary Fund reduced the weighting of the U.S. dollar and the yen and increased that of the euro in its Special Drawing Rights valuation basket after its regular five-year review.

  • Mexico's tourism income rose 10.8% YoY.

  • Japan's economy grew an annualized  3.9% in Q3.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Quick Overview

  • (MarketWatch) -- German industrial giant Siemens AG raised its dividend for the latest fiscal year by 70% and outlined Thursday a new dividend policy, saying it plans to distribute 30% to 50% of net profit to shareholders.

  • Intel raises dividend by 15%

  • (Bloomberg) -- The world’s largest banks won a reprieve of at least a year before facing extra measures that would force them to rein in risk as divisions within the Group of 20 nations delayed an agreement on such rules.

  • Fears that China is poised to raise interest rates and worries over the euro zone’s fiscal crisis earlier battered commodities.

  • Euro-zone GDP rose 0.4% QoQ and 1.9% YoY

  • The preliminary University of Michigan gauge of consumer sentiment rose to 69.3 from 67.7 in October.

  • Prime Minister Ali Mujawar said Somali pirates are holding 813 sailors from across the world hostage.

  • China's port capacity is estimated to be as much as 40% more than current demand.

  • Japan’s GDPt rose an annualized 3.9 % in the three months ended Sept. 30.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Quick Overview

  • China posted a larger-than-forecast $27.1 billion October trade surplus. Exports gained 22.9 % YoY and imports rose 25.3 %.

  • The CFTC plans to detail which institutions will be subject to tough new regulations on December 1

  • Beijing and Washington policies put upward pressure on currencies elsewhere and risk return to trade protectionism -- so says Greenspam.

  • Australia's unemployment rate rose to 5.4% in October, up from 5.1% in the previous month.

  • Japanese core machinery orders fell 10.3% in September.

  • The N.Y. Fed said Wednesday it will buy $105 billion in Treasury bonds over the next month.

  • Cisco Systems is forecasting 3% to 5% revenue growth in its fiscal second quarter, down from current projections of 13% growth.

  • YoY sales of new houses in Spain declined in September by 4.1 %, ending an eight-month-long sales surge.

  • (Bloomberg) Copper for three-month delivery rose to as much as $8,800 a metric ton after Anglo American Plc said it’s receiving “huge” interest for 200,000 tons of new copper capacity it expects to bring online in 2012.

Tuesday, November 09, 2010

No update today

Quick Overview

  • (World Bank) Asian economies may need to turn to capital controls as quantitative easing by the U.S. threatens to spur asset bubbles...

  • USDA estimates wheat ending stocks at 848 m.b. bushels down 21 from the average pre-report trade guess and five under last month. This is a 34.7 stock to use ratio
  • USDA estimates corn production at 12.540 billion bushels, 5 m.b. under pre-report estimates and 24 under last month. Leaving ending stocks at 827 m.b. This is a stock to use ratio of 6.2%. Globally world corn ending stocks were reduced by 3.2 MMT to 129.2 MMT
  • USDA estimates soybeans Production was put at 3.757 b.b. 51 m.b. and 33 m.b. under last month. Ending stocks were down 30% from last month to 185 million bushels. This is a 5.5% stock to use ratio or 20 days worth of supply.

  • Oil demand and price are set to grow steadily over the next 25 years despite environmental policies, essentially dooming climate-change goals, the International Energy Agency forecast on Tuesday.

  • U.S. Inventories at the wholesale level rose 1.5 % MoM and 7.9% YoY

  • The U.S. has lost its double-A credit rating with Dagong Global Credit Rating Co., Ltd., the first domestic rating agency in China, due to its new round of quantitative easing policy.

Monday, November 08, 2010

Quick Overview

  • The longer than usual Indian monsoon, which usually ends by mid to late September, is reducing exports of iron ore.

  • (Market Watch) -- Shares of Ambac Financial Group Inc. dropped late Monday after Bloomberg News reported the troubled bond insurer may file for bankruptcy as early as this week.

  • Hedge funds ramped up bullish bets on oil to the highest level since at least June 2006.

  • (Hellenic Shipping) Asian coal import demand is expected to be improved with the Asian winter season being a cold one. Adding to this positive expectation some port congestion may be experienced in Australian and Indonesian ports as many forward fixtures for thermal coal have been recorded during the past weeks, and all these fixtures can’t be accommodated without delays. This congestion might well be the extra boost we all want and hope for the dry cargo market” says Cotzias.

  • Coal burned to generate power may jump 12% next year on Asian demand for the fuel and supply constraints says DB.

  • (Bloomberg) Flooding across more than half of Thailand, the world’s largest rice exporter, may damage 11 percent of the nation’s rice plantation and lower output from the main crop by 3.9 percent, the Farm Ministry said.

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Quick Overview

  • YoY Colombia's coffee output is set to rise 11% in 2010/11 (October-September) to 9 million 60-kg bags, the country's exporters association said on Thursday.

  • U.S. pending sales of homes fall 1.8% in September

  • U.S. nonfarm payrolls rose by 151,000 for October -- jobless rate steady at 9.6%.

  • Brazil's industrial production increased 6.3% YoY in September

  • The Spanish economy registered zero growth in Q3.

  • Japan's central bank left key rate on hold.

  • MoM Industrial producer prices in the euro zone rose by 0.3 % in September

  • YoY Interregional trade in Central America grew 6 % during the first half of 2010

  • China is offering buyers of plug-in hybrids and pure electric cars subsidies of as much as 60,000 Yuan ($9,000) to help cut pollution and reduce oil dependency.

  • Japan’s September leading indicators fell 0.6 % MoM.

Saturday, November 06, 2010

Doubts grow over wisdom of Ben Bernanke 'super-put'
Bond funds are already restive. Pimco's Bill Gross says the great bull market in bonds is over, denigrating Fed policy as the greatest "ponzi scheme" in history. Warren Buffett has chimed in too, warning that anybody buying bonds at this stage is "making a big mistake",

Thursday, November 04, 2010

Volcker Rule to Hurt Shareholders, Competitiveness, Bachus Says
The rule aims to reduce the chance that banks will make risky investments with their own capital that put their federally insured deposits at risk.
Copper to Surge on ‘Mammoth Demand,’ Standard Chartered Says “Things are not looking very rosy on the supply side given Chile and Peru’s reduction in output,” said Haigh, who joined Standard Chartered in July. “We are seeing mammoth demand for copper from China and these two suppliers cannot keep pace.”
The copper market may turn to a deficit of 723,000 tons in 2011 from a surplus of 112,000 tons this year, with the gap widening to 1.2 million tons in 2012 and further to 1.5 million tons in 2013, according to Haigh’s presentation. The Lisbon- based International Copper Study Group last month forecast a 2011 deficit of 435,000 tons.

Wednesday, November 03, 2010

Next Update Nov. 7

Quick Overview

  • U.S. factory orders in September rose 2.1%, the third consecutive monthly increase.

  • The Fed will buy an additional $600 billion of Treasuries through June
Aussie dollar breaks the buck as Australia, India fight Fed with 'quantitative tightening'
Australia's reserve bank said the "the economy is now subject to a large expansionary shock from the high terms of trade and has relatively modest amounts of spare capacity. The risk of inflation rising again over the medium term remains".

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Quick Overview

  • India boosted interest rates by a quarter-point to 6.25.

  • Australia’s central bank surprises the market with a 0.25 interest rate increase.

  • The Institute for Supply Management’s factory index increased to 56.9 from 54.4

  • Total volume of China's foreign trade is expected to hit 2.8 trillion U.S. dollars for the whole year of 2010, up 25 % YoY, the Ministry of Commerce said.

  • China’s purchasing managers’ index rose to 54.7 from 53.8 in September, beating expectations.

  • Moody’s' said Greece, Portugal and Ireland are likely to avoid sovereign bond defaults due to strong domestic demand from local banks and pension funds

  • The Economic Times reported that India may resume sugar exports next month and the government is expected to accelerate applications from mills for shipment of about 500,000 metric tons