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The European Central Bank started buying covered bonds with negative yields as its asset-purchase program reduces the supply of the highly rated debt, according to two people familiar with the matter.
The central bank bought the debt in the past two weeks, said the people, who asked not to be identified because the information is private. The notes were from Germany, one of the people said.
The ECB has bought 69.7 billion euros ($75.5 billion) of covered bonds since October as part of its latest measures designed to stimulus growth in the euro area. The accumulation of assets is driving down yields and the central bank now holds about 15 percent of the market, according to ABN Amro Bank NV.
After having declared an end to a month-long unprovoked bombardment in Yemen –Saudi Arabia resumed a new round of airstrikes.
The US-backed coalition led by Saudi Arabia and other Gulf Cooperation Council countries, has renewed airstrikes inside Yemen, continuing their breach of international law after announcing a ceasefire and apparent end of Operation Decisive Storm.
The final phases of the Pentagon sanctioned Decisive Storm, has given way to its sequel – another cryptic, yet cynically titled, ‘Operation Restoring Hope’, as the UN has raised concerns over civilians killed over the past four weeks.
With the US-Saudi proxy against the Shia militia Houthis taking center stage, Al Qaeda militants in Yemen, also known as Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula or ‘AQAP’, were able to organize a jailbreak and Central Bank robbery in the midst of Western focus on the Houthis. Here’s an excerpt from a report by the LA Times that outlines the AQAP incident:
“AQAP fighters launched a jailbreak near Mukalla that freed about 300 prisoners, including several dozen of their comrades, officials and residents said.”
“The militants also stole more than $1 million in Yemeni rials from the local branch of the Central Bank, security officials said, and set up roadblocks across the city.”
This is just the latest US-sanctioned foreign policy failure to hit an already fractured region. Even the official foreign policy mouthpieces were raising alarms early on. On March 19th, in a Council on Foreign Relations (CFR) release, the rise of AQAP extremism was predicted as a symptom of the US-GCC proxy war in Yemen:
zerohedge.com / by Tyler Durden on 04/24/2015 16:19
Judging by the action today, all that mattered today was 2117.39 – that is the S&P 500’s previous closing record high from March 2nd. One glimpse at the charts below and the VIX-slamming is evident (especially at the close) as each time it came close to losing the record high, a miraculous deep-pocketd volatility-seller stepped in…
On the heels of another chaotic trading week in world markets, today one of the top economists in the world sent King World News an incredibly powerful piece discussing the ugly truth about what is really happening around the world. Below is the fantastic piece from Michael Pento.
April 24 – (King World News) – Just like in the world of fashion, economic terminologies come in and out of vogue. One such economic term trending recently is Secular Stagnation. First proposed by Keynesian economist Alvin Hansen back in the 1930s, Secular Stagnation was coined to explain America’s dismal economic performance—in which sluggish growth and employment levels were well below potential….
It was striking admission from a man who has close ties to the Obama inner circle and was once at the top of the list for the post of U.S. Treasury Secretary. Considering the President continues to tout economic recovery, and that a significant majority of Americans reportedly believe the economy is healthy, the fact that Dimon is warning of another financial crisis should be a clear sign of what’s to come.
But if his words aren’t enough to convince you we have a systemic problem that will soon come to the forefront, maybe the recent actions of his secretive trading desks will suffice.
According to a detailed report from The Wealth Watchman JP Morgan Chase has been amassing a huge stockpile of physical silver, presumably in anticipation of a major liquidity event.
The durable orders number, ex-transportation which means aircraft, was very poor this morning marking seven months in a row of declines. It is the trend, not the headline number, that is most important.
Stocks were off to the races, with ‘tech staples’ leading the charge.
The Nasdaq set a new all time high.
The VIX is at its low for this year, an area of complacency we have not seen since the beginning of last December.
If you look closely at the composition of the market, you will find that in the major indices the declines were outpacing the advances.
What this means is that the index moved higher on selective buying in certain heavily weighted stocks.
All in all, this is a good time to take profits and pare back on stock holdings. Not necessarily go short unless you are very aggressive and a short term seasoned trader, but in anticipation that the market momentum wiseguys are expecting the Fed to bail them out further at these valuations.
Or the ECB and Bank of Japan for that matter. We are in one heck of a nasty little bubble here in financial paper.
zerohedge.com / by Tyler Durden on 04/24/2015 15:15
One month ago we wrote about the ripple effects of the “mini-Greece going off in the heartland of Europe“, referring of course to the Viennese black swan, the bailed-in implosion of the Austrian Heta bad bank which nobody had anticipated because the numbers were so thoroughly cooked, nobody had even the faintest clue just how bad the truth was. We said that “while the acute pain came and went for Heta bondholders who have seen a nearly 50% loss in just a few short months, the bigger and far more diffuse pain is only just starting…. The first casualty: the beautifully picturesque southern Austrian province of Carinthia.”
libertyblitzkrieg.com / Michael Krieger / Apr 24, 2015
We’ve all seen the stats by now. U.S. police killed more citizens in March alone than UK police have killed in 100 years. We’ve seen the plethora of videos documenting unnecessary police brutality. There are so many in fact, I can’t even begin to document them all. We’ve also seen the militarized police in all its ghoulish display in Ferguson.
We’ve seen the wrong way to police in New York City, most recently when an unarmed Eric Garner was choked to death on the street in broad daylight for selling untaxed cigarettes. Now, finally, we see how real policing is supposed to be done, courtesy of four Swedish police officers who were on vacation in NYC.
New York, NY– Four Swedish police officers vacationing in New York City were on the subway on Wednesday when a fight broke out. The train operator asked if there were any police riding who could help with the situation. The Scandinavian patrolmen were very soothing and non-aggressive as they de-escalated the situation instead of escalating it, the way we have seen so often from our own men and women in blue.
Dr. Richard Pan of California is the author of one of the most tyrannical bills currently being proposed in the U.S. to take away the right to informed consent for a medical procedure. SB277 is a proposed California bill that would remove all personal belief exemptions to vaccines and prevent children from attending school unless they are fully vaccinated.
A hearing on SB277 was held at the State Capital on April 15, 2015. The support was overwhelming opposed to the bill, with only 53 people present supporting the bill, and 743 present opposing it:
The Senate Education committee did not take a vote on the bill that day, as several members of the committee had reservations about it. A vote was put off until April 22nd, one week later.
At the April 22 meeting, after 13 minutes of discussion, the committee passed the bill by a vote of 7 to 2.
What happened? How could the committee pass a bill with so much opposition from their constituents?
zerohedge.com / by Tyler Durden on 04/24/2015 14:36
Since the launch of PSPP (i.e. ECB QE) on March 9, quite a bit of attention has been paid to German Bunds. Under the program, national NCBs’ share of monthly purchases is based on the ECB’s capital key and as it turns out, it’s going to quite difficult (if not impossible) for Germany to source enough purchasable assets given projected supply and Q€’s structural limitations. This has led to collapsing yields which have in turn forced the ECB and the Bundesbank to look further out in terms of maturities in order to avoid the -0.20% yield floor causing an epic flattening of the Bund curve as everything converges on the depo rate.
For all the visual learners out there, here’s a table showing the shortage of purchasable assets in Germany…
Lee Adler goes behind the paper curtain of Wall Street propaganda to strip away the media hype and hysteria around the financial news headlines to show you the actual facts. With economic data whipsawing wildly, this week he focuses on the trend of actual data to reveal whether anything has changed that would cause the outlook to change. The answer probably won’t surprise you.
The Chinese stock markets have been rocketing higher in a popular speculative mania. New Chinese investors are flocking to their local red-hot markets, borrowing heavily to buy hyper-speculative stocks. Like all past manias, this one is guaranteed to end badly. And when China’s parabolic stock indexes inevitably collapse, the global stock markets face serious risks of getting sucked into that fear-fueled stampede.
The Chinese people are endlessly fascinating. After being blessed to travel to China several decades ago as a kid, my interest in that country and culture has only grown since. One thing the Chinese are renowned for is their intense competitiveness. Their work ethic is legendary, as they zealously strive to improve their lots in life. So wealth, and the perception of it, is exceedingly important socially in China.
The stories of this phenomenon are endless. A recent example happened in spring 2013 after what was essentially a gold panic. Right after gold’s plummet, Chinese housewives rushed to buy up gold to the tune of $16b in a couple weeks! Why? Most interviewed by the media said something along the lines of they didn’t want to be upstaged on the gold-jewelry front by their friends who were splurging on gold too!
The Chinese people are constantly comparing their own wealth with their perceptions of how their peers are doing. They can’t stand the thought of being left behind, as they will lose critical social status. Add this to the overpowering Chinese desire for upward social mobility, and this people’s centuries-old deep cultural affinity for trading, and there is probably no more-perfect breeding ground for a stock mania to ignite.
And over the past half-year or so, one has. The Shanghai Stock Exchange is China’s premier stock-trading venue, and its namesake Shanghai Stock Exchange Composite Index (SSEC) is that country’s flagship stock-market benchmark. It is China’s equivalent of the US’s flagship S&P 500, and is even constructed similarly. It includes China’s biggest and best companies, representing that country’s economy.
news.goldseek.com / Julian D.W. Phillips for the Gold & Silver Forecasters / 24 April 2015
Gold Today –New York closed at $1,194.70 up $7.90 on Thursday in NY. Asia held it there before the LBMA Gold price was set at $1,192.15 up $4.90. The euro equivalent stood at €1,099.87 down €5.84 while the dollar was stronger at $1.0834 against yesterday’s $1.0742. Ahead of New York’s opening, gold was trading lower in London at $1,192.30 and in the euro at €1,101.74.
. Silver Today – The silver price closed at $15.89 up 10 cents on Thursday. Ahead of New York’s opening it was trading at $15.87.
Gold (very short-term) The gold price will continue to consolidate, then make a strong move either way, in New York today.
Silver (very short-term) The silver price will continue to consolidate, then make a strong move either way, in New York today.
Isn’t it infuriating? The Technical picture has no discernible pattern at the moment, but pointed down to most people, yesterday. But it went up instead, as Asian demand filtered through constantly, pushing short positions to close once again. To illustrate just how strong Asian gold demand is the Swiss reported exports of re-refined gold [in the 1 kg range] of 46.4 tonnes of gold to China and a larger number of 72.5 tonnes of gold to India up from 23.6 tonnes and 27.1 tonnes of gold respectively for February.