Friday, December 18, 2020

Notes Today: 

  •  Boris Johnson summoned ministers for an emergency meeting on Friday to discuss how to tackle mounting concerns about the new strain of coronavirus identified in parts of south-east England. The variant is thought to be more infectious. 
  •  The U.S. current-account deficit, rose 10.6% in Q3
  • Senator Ron Johnson blocks $1,200 checks for Americans cites the deficit. No deficit problem when he voted for tax cuts for the top 1%

  • Fed allows banks to resume share buybacks
  • Do you think the money Rupert Murdoch paid to get first in line in getting a vaccine came from his Fox profits for the ratings they got telling their viewers COVID is a hoax and that the vaccine is bad? @kurteichenwald asks.
  • The defense bill Trump is threatening to veto contains cyber security to protect against Russian hacks.
  • Germany's  VW falling a bit behind Tesla. Well, perhaps more than a bit.

Thursday, December 17, 2020

Nuclear weapons agency breached amid massive cyber onslaught. 

Hackers accessed systems at the National Nuclear Security Administration, which maintains the U.S. nuclear weapons stockpile.   Trump, along with all the Russia attacked America deniers, are mum.. no-one is in charge.


Notes Today:  

  • Republican Bid to End Virus Lending Slows Relief Deal The holdup comes as some 11 million people are unemployed, and applications for U.S. state jobless benefits unexpectedly jumped to the highest level in three months.
  • With a new democratic administration - as predicted, vast deficit Republicans are now “once more” becoming extremely concerned about government spending and the deficit. Rinse and repeat – rinse and repeat.  
  • ATT, after month of procrastination, finally got around to be included in the Roku platform.

  • Boris Johnson has stated that EU talks are in a serious situation. No kidding, who could have thought. BP rally continues..

Wednesday, December 16, 2020


We want them infected’: Trump appointee demanded ‘herd immunity’ strategy, emails reveal. 

successful toxic policy- most regrettably

Tuesday, December 15, 2020

Notes Today:  

  • The Dow rallied 337 points today as Nasdaq closes at a record high ahead of one more stimulus meeting

The Port of Los Angeles processed 980,729 Twenty-Foot Equivalent Units (TEUs) in October, an increase of 27.3% compared to October 2019. Propelled by replenishment of inventories and retailers preparing for upcoming holidays, October marked the busiest month in the Port’s 114-year history.
  • YoY, overall cargo volumes lag by 5.3% compared to 2019. 

  • Japan Exports (YoY) at -4.2%,

Monday, December 14, 2020

Notes Today: 

Forget 100-year bonds. The U.S. should sell 1,000-year bonds to finance infrastructure a Goldman bond expert. 
Can you imagine the volatility on that 1,000-year bond when rates go up? Wow, that really would be something to behold.

  • Barr is out , clearly not subservient enough.

Sunday, December 13, 2020

Notes Today:  

  • Brexit talks extended - beyond..........   The British pound gained a bit against the  dollar and  the euro -  relieved that talks continue. Whiplash - to be continued
  • I suppose, if you want to trade in a marker, you’ll probably have to abide by the rules set by the members of that market. - as Britain "used" to be.

  •  EXCLUSIVE-U.S. Treasury breached by hackers backed by foreign government – sources.
  • Russian government spies are behind a broad hacking campaign that has breached U.S. agencies and a top cyber firm. 
  • Trump fires smart people like Krebs etc. what's to be expected?

 Quick Overview is up to date

Saturday, December 12, 2020

62% of Smarkets bettors do not expect a Brexit deal this weekend. My guess: whiplash - to be continued

Friday, December 11, 2020

China Containerized Freight Index (CCFI) 
  • Reuters: But due to China’s lopsided trade balance - exporting three containers for every one imported recently - and delays in containers returning to China due to the pandemic overseas, a severe shortage is now starting to pinch export flows. Roughly 60% of global goods move by container, and according to United Nations trade data there are close to 180 million containers worldwide.

  • Nearly 2,000 containers aboard a ship managed by NYK Shipmanagement of Japan were lost or damaged when it hit by stormy weather in the Pacific Ocean,

Couple of closing charts for the week:

  •  British Pound closing for the week with Brexit on course for a no-deal - or so forth ..

  • Lumber

Notes Today: 

  • In a very real sense, it feels like a third political party has been born. America now has the Republicans, the Democrats and the Seditionists. Glenn Kirschner @glennkirschner

  • (WP) White House “orders” FDA chief to authorize Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine Friday or submit his resignation. "ORDERS - will undoubtedly  build lots of confidence.

  • Another 20 House Republicans sign onto to the Texas lawsuit that seeks to overturn the election. The total is now 126  or  64% of the House GOP    Un-Freakin'-Believable  - Now rejected by U.S. Supreme Court. ✅

        And if Mitt Romney had some cajones he’d form a new  party.
  • In the view of the analysts at JP Morgan, the S&P 500 index is set to rally 25% in 2021, as the US banking giant lifts its price target to 4,600.
  • Bloomberg:  Apple Inc. has started building its own cellular modem for future devices, a move that would replace components from Qualcomm Inc., Apple’s top chip executive told staff on Thursday.
  • Qcom is down 7.6% so far on the day.
  • US Baker Hughes US Oil Rig Count climbed from previous 246 to 258  
  • US Michigan Consumer Sentiment Index above forecasts at 81.4 versus forecast of 76.5
  • And Mitch McConnell keeps blowing up relief bill ..😠

Thursday, December 10, 2020

 TIME's 2020 Person of the Year.

Notes Today:

  • And Mitch McConnell keeps blocking relieve ..

  • It didn’t take long for the Federal Reserve’s increased attention to climate change to spark pushback from (what climate change)  Republicans.
  • Bloomberg:  Boris Johnson warns Britain should prepare to leave the European Union’s single market without a trade deal as negotiations falter. 
  • Fishing accounts for only 0.1% of British GDP. Yet it could sink the chances of a (very fishy) Brexit deal.

  • US Initial jobless claims rose by 137,000 to 853,000 in the seven days ended Dec. 5, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Thursday. More than expected. 
  • Shares of Airbnb IPO valued at just over $100 billion 

  •  USDA cut the 2020 U.S. #cotton crop by 6.7% from November, and that was all on yield. This year's harvest was 20% smaller than in 2019 and is the smallest crop in 5 years. Market participants had a pretty good idea that a cut was likely this month. (Karen Braun  @kannbwx)

  •  USDA leaves the U.S. #corn balance sheet unchanged, but #soybeans fall to 175 mln bu on a 15 mln bu jump in crush. Soy exports unch. #Wheat exports were increased 10 mln bu. (Karen Braun @kannbwx)
  • See market analyst #Steve Freed recap the Dec 10 #USDA S/D crop report. No changes in soybean & corn exports

Wednesday, December 09, 2020

These 18 States want  the Supreme Court to throw out the 2020 Election.   Incredible  - Seditious Abuse

Latest: 106 Republican House members, that evidently do not believe in democracy, are supporting the Texas' bid to overturn President-elect Joe Biden's win.  

Regarding  Covid ( 2560 death today)  No mask Republicans are mum. 











North Dakota


South Carolina

South Dakota


TEXAS  < Started in


West Virginia

 Notes Today:

  • More firmness on the way! Sunday deadline set for ‘firm decision’ on Brexit talks. Really, this coming Sunday?
  •  Bloomberg: Facebook (AKA as the plague on humanity) uses algorithms to spread its poison. But those algos are designed by human data scientists. 

 BREAKING: For the very first time, the US has surpassed 3,000 COVID deaths in a single day. 3121 Covid deaths today.

  • (Reuters) -YouTube said on Wednesday it would start removing content that falsely allege widespread fraud changed the outcome of the U.S. presidential election, in a change to its more hands-off stance on videos making similar claims. (About Time)

Tuesday, December 08, 2020

Notes Today:

  • Ray Dalio  (smart dude) said he saw no reason that stocks couldn’t trade at 50 times earnings. Plus, according to “invaluable”😏 Dow Trend Earnings (AKA FED Model) still inexpensive. 
  • QuantumScape (NYSE:QS) releases performance data demonstrating that its technology addresses fundamental issues holding back widespread adoption of high-energy density solid-state batteries, including charge time, cycle life, safety, and operating temperature. The stock is up 57% today 
  • If you are not risk-averse, it might be worth your while to take a look at QS. In the greater scheme of things, it is only a $1.6 billion Co. (Tesla 613 billion) and has More than a $1 billion in its war chest. If the technology performs as advertised it could improve things substantially.

  •  China Producer Price Index (YoY) out at -1.5%, above expectations (-1.8%)
  •  Pelosi and Schumer say Mnuchin's $916b aid plan unacceptable.
  •  The Supreme Court rejected the Trump lawyers bid to overturn the Pa. election and doesn’t even bother to comment.
  •   Trump's

and Scott Atlas’s
herd immunity at work.  US Coronavirus deaths  at 293,398, surpassing the number of US combat deaths (291,557) in World War II. 

Monday, December 07, 2020

Notes Today:

  • Reuters: Australia to make Facebook (AKA the plague on humanity), Google pay news outlets for content.
  • U.K. officials warn Brexit talks could collapse in hours. 

  • Facebook's (AKA the plague on humanity) renamed cryptocurrency is still 'wolf in sheep's clothing': German Finance Minister

  • US Senate Democratic leader Schumer says McConnell has refused to compromise on covid relief and today we heard the "same old song" from McConnell. 

  • Karen Braun  @kannbwx   Checking in on traffic of #soybeans - or lack thereof. Looks like #Brazil really did run out of beans. It's been a couple years since the activity was this light.
  • QoQ Japans GDP was up 5.0 % 

  • Japan had a current account surplus of 2,144.7 billion yen in October, the Ministry of Finance said on Tuesday - up 15.7 % YoY.


Trump administration officials passed when Pfizer offered in late summer to sell the U.S. government additional doses of its Covid-19 vaccine.

Now Pfizer may not be able provide more of its vaccine to the United States until next June because of its commitments to other countries, they said. 

Trump Admin. performing as expected!

Putin's former son-in-law bought shares worth $380m for $100, report says

A Russian businessman who was married to Vladimir Putin’s daughter received an estimated $380m (£283m) stake in a Russian petrochemicals company for just $100, an 
investigation by Russia’s iStories invest
igative outlet has claimed.

Sunday, December 06, 2020

Notes Today: 

  • The CME is launching a water futures contract linked to the $1.1 billion California spot water market.
  • Japan's Leading Economic Index at 93.8 in October from previous 92.5  - highest in 16 month.
  • Senate Republicans

    have invited a leading anti-vaxxer to be the lead witness at a Homeland Security committee hearing on Tuesday at a time when the US is preparing the largest-ever vaccination campaign to fight Covid.
  • YoY China Exports rose 14.9% in November from previous 7.6%
  • China Trade Balance rose to 507.1B in November from previous 401.75B 
  • Bloomberg: Trump said his attorney Rudy Giuliani, who has been leading efforts to overturn the results of the Nov. 3 general election, has tested positive for the Covid-19 virus.
  • Reuters: A new EU-UK trade agreement will “definitely” not come together on Sunday night, citing an official with the bloc who added that three most contentious issues remained unresolved.
  • FT: New US stimulus bill could come as early as Monday 

  • Economist: Global debt will reach $200trn by the end of this year, predicted S&P Global, which owns a credit-ratings agency. The amount is equivalent to 265% of the world’s GDP. But the firm said that the increase in the global debt-to-GDP ratio was not a crisis, provided interest rates remain low and covid-19 vaccines become widely distributed. 

  • New Zealand just became one of the only countries in the world to declare Climate Change a global emergency.

Saturday, December 05, 2020

 Capitalism, and can you afford it?  I certainly hope so!

US average hourly wage is $24.87 per  Trading Economics
So, with the S&P at $3699 divided by $24.87 you have to now work 149 hours to buy 1 share. This compares to some 30(or less) hours of work needed from  the 1950's to the  1980's to buy 1 share. What happened in the early 1980's ? - think about it. Besides, how many people do you know that actually earn $25, since, according to the Brookings institution, almost half of US workers between ages 18 and 64 are employed in low wage jobs. (The above # of course ignore the current covid disaster)

 Quick Overview is up to date

Friday, December 04, 2020

 Wall Street and finance workers could get COVID vaccines before most Americans

The American Bankers Association said it has asked for the CDC to designate financial services industry as “essential workers,” following guidelines issued by the Department of Homeland Security.

Some peoples sense of entitlement is just stunning!

Notes Today: 

  • Bloomberg: U.K. and EU pause Brexit talks after intensive negotiations fail to resolve key issues, as PM Boris Johnson and European Commission President Ursula von der Leyen schedule crisis call..
  • A federal judge ordered the Trump administration to restore DACA to its pre-2017 status.

  • US Nonfarm Payrolls rose by 245,000 in November vs. 469,000 expected   

  • US Factory Orders rose by 1% in October vs. 0.8% expected - the sixth straight monthly gain. 

  • The U.S. trade deficit widened 1.7% to $63.1 billion in October. 

  • Germany Factory Orders MoM at 2.9%, above forecasts of 1.5% 

  • Trump is doing his best to jam in the opening of oil and gas drilling in Alaska’s Arctic National Wildlife Refuge.  The sale of leases is planned for 6 January 2021, just ahead of the inauguration of the US president-elect, Joe Biden, who opposes the move.
  • Bloomberg: With a vaccine on the way, congressional failure to pass Covid relief now would put millions of jobs and thousands of small businesses at risk.


A must read article by Nicholas Kristof of the NYT regarding Pornhub. 

It’s one of the biggest websites in the world. Every month it attracts more visitors than Netflix, Yahoo or Amazon, and its corporate owners rake in vast sums of money.

Thursday, December 03, 2020

Notes Today: 

  • The US Labor Department said initial jobless claims dropped to 712,000, a decrease of 75,000 from the previous week's revised level of 787,000. 

  • The British pound continues to outperform its rivals, despite comments that significant disagreements remain in the trade talks, and that the outcome was uncertain. 

  • Warner Bros. (T) will send all its 2021 movies to HBO Max the same day they hit theaters. So, when are they going to get HBO Max onto the Roku platform? This century? The old HBO at $15 is on Roku, so why not the MAX - that also goes for $15?  Probably ATT smugness – at work. 

Despite Zuckerberg’s statement that he “does not want to be the arbiter of truth” of what is posted on the site - Facebook (AKA the plague on humanity) said it would remove posts that contain claims about Covid-19 vaccines that have been debunked by public health experts. WOW, if they "really" start removing BS it will be a shadow of its former self.
In Addition: A group of 20 to 30 state attorneys general is reportedly readying a suit against  Facebook. 

Wednesday, December 02, 2020

Notes Today:

  • Costco  (COST) November sales rose 15.1% to 15.67 billion, the retailer said Wednesday. Online sales rose 71.3% in November and 86.4% in the quarter. Stock’s down – obviously.
  • Australia AiG Performance of Construction Index rose from previous 52.7 to 55.3 in November
  • Australia Commonwealth Bank Composite PMI came in at 54.9, above expectations.
  •  Bloomberg: The U.S. House of Representatives approved legislation that could lead to Chinese companies including behemoths like Alibaba and Baidu getting kicked off U.S. exchanges if Washington regulators aren’t allowed to review their financial audits. The bill easily cleared the Senate in May. Trump is expected to sign it. 

  • Snowflake Inc.’s (SNOW) Shares were down 9% after-hours Wednesday. The cloud company reported a Q3 net loss of $168.9 million, versus a net loss of $88.1 million, in the year-ago quarter. Revenue more than doubled to $159.6 million from $73 YoY. 

  • People poured an estimated $81.8 billion into equity ETFs in November. 

  • The U.K. became the first western country to approve a Covid-19 vaccine, with its regulator clearing the Pfizer-BioNTech shot ahead of decisions in the U.S. and European Union. Meanwhile, U.S. hospitalizations and deaths are totally out of control.

Tuesday, December 01, 2020

Notes Today:

  • The Dow had its best month since 1987.
  • U.S. prosecutors are investigating whether several individuals offered political contributions in exchange for a presidential pardon, according to an unsealed court document.

  • US Residential construction rose 2.9% .
  • US construction projects rose 1.3% in October.
  • Joe Biden’s Treasury Secretary nominee and former Fed President Janet Yellen warned that America is battling a historic economic crisis and called for urgent policy action to avert a “self-reinforcing” downturn.
  • A new push began in Congress to send federal aid to businesses, state and local governments slammed by the pandemic. So, 10-yearnotes are a bit higher, with 10-year yield last up 7.7 basis points at 0.9194%.

Monday, November 30, 2020

Thanks to the heroic efforts of health workers - a little bit of good news regarding the virus. While the overall US news is grim and getting grimmer daily, the % of people dying from the disease is now under 2%. That is down from over 6% in the spring. A development for which we should be most thankful.

Warren Buffett dismissed bitcoin and other cryptocurrencies as worthless in a CNBC interview on Monday. "Cryptocurrencies basically have no value," Buffett said. "They don't produce anything." "You can't do anything with it except sell it to somebody else," he added.Feb 24, 2020

Meanwhile, Bitcoin has shot to a record just as billions of institutional dollars have fled gold. (Gold’s at least good for a filling in someone’s tooth  😉) 

Notes Today:

  • Bloomberg: Bank of America Corp. said that it won’t provide project financing for oil and gas exploration in the Arctic after facing opposition from environmentalists. 
  • Scotland's First Minister Nicola Sturgeon on Monday ramped up her calls for a new Scottish independence referendum
  • Bloomberg: Moderna Inc. requested clearance for its coronavirus vaccine in the U.S. after a new analysis showed it was highly effective in preventing Covid-19, with no serious safety problems.

  • Japan's jobless rate rose to 3.1% in October.
  • WSJ: The coronavirus was in the US in mid-December 2019, a few weeks before it was officially identified in China, according to CDC analysis of blood donation samples. This also matches waste water analysis that found virus earlier in Europe.
  • Scott Atlas, Trump’s herd immunity dude (nothing but the finest people) is gone. And so is the herd immunity guy in Sweden. GR!

  • Japans factory output jumped 3.8% MoM mainly due to strength in general machinery production and motor vehicle manufacturing.
  • Japans Retail sales rose 6.4% YoY in October up for the first time in eight months.
  • China, the first major economy to fully recover from the coronavirus crisis, said its  PMI rose to 52.1 in November from 51.4 in October. 
  • About 3.2 billion people live in agricultural areas with “high to very high” water shortages and competition over resources is rising, the UN’s Food & Agriculture Organization said in a report. 

  •  According to a Bloomberg article qanon is thriving, not just in the US, but also in Japan.  


 Besides lithium, batteries evidently also need copper.  

Sunday, November 29, 2020

Saturday, November 28, 2020

WP: Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismisses lawsuit against mail ballots with prejudice in another defeat for Trump
The Pennsylvania Supreme Court dismissed with prejudice a Republican lawsuit seeking to invalidate more than 2.5 million votes cast by mail in the general election, the latest in a string of legal defeats for the GOP as President Trump fails to undo his losses in key battleground states.

Notes Today:

  • Sydney CBD surpassed 40 degrees Celsius (104 F) on Saturday while swathes of western New South Wales, South Australia and northern Victoria baked through even higher temperatures nearing 45 degrees. 

  • Reuters: With just five weeks left until the United Kingdom finally exits the EU’s orbit on Dec. 31, both sides are calling on the other to compromise on the three main issues of contention - fishing, state aid and how to resolve any future disputes. 

  • Mexico’s GDP rose 12.1% QoQ - the best going back to 1990
  • Profits at Chinese industrial firms surged 28.2% YoY in October to 642.91 billion-yuan ($97.79 billion), National Bureau of Statistics (NBS) data showed on Friday, after rising 10.1% in September versus the previous year.
  • China's unofficial restrictions on coal imports from Australia are having more than just an impact on miners down under, it's hurting steel producers in China and helping those elsewhere.
  • An Iranian scientist was killed in an ambush near Tehran on Friday that could provoke confrontation between Iran and its foes in the last weeks of  Trump's presidency.

The euro was the most used currency for global payments last month, the first time it has outpaced the dollar since February 2013.

The US is losing its $ dominance.

And while the China Containerized Freight Index is chugging right along and making new highs -            the Baltic Dry Index continues to struggle.