Business Education

Wilbur Ross Wakes Up From His Friday Nap Just Long Enough To Prove That He Doesn’t Know What The Commerce Secretary Does

We don’t want to shock or alarm you guys, but it really seems hard to ignore that Wilbur Ross either does not know or does not care what the job of the Commerce Secretary is…which is troubling since he’s supposed to be the Commerce Secretary. The animate remains that now constitute Mr. Ross spend an inordinate amount of time napping, worrying about foot comfort and thinking about how to monetize and dominate the actual moon. Unfortunately for American businesses, Wilbur does not seem to allot much of his precious little awake time to the “Promoting American businesses” part of the gig. Whatever you might think of Wilbur’s old career, or the man himself, it’s become impossible to argue that he is anything other than a wrinkly, monotoned square peg in a round hole job. Even his boss has admi...

Fortunately For Google (And Tech Investors), People Only Watch 60 Minutes For The Porn Stars These Days

Hindsight is always 20/20, but when it comes to the tech heavyweights that have shouldered a disproportionate share of the burden along the way to sustaining the U.S. equities rally, you didn’t have to be Nostradamus to predict that regulatory concerns would eventually come calling. You can throw Tesla in there as well when it comes to companies that, by virtue of their ambitions vis-à-vis being at the forefront of technological innovation and cross-industry disruption, were bound to come under intense regulatory scrutiny. To be sure, these are all idiosyncratic stories to a certain extent. Amazon has to deal with Trump tilting at the WaPo windmill. Facebook, and to a lesser degree Twitter, are laboring to get out from under the shadow of election interference. And Tesla is at pains to exp...

That 100-Year Argentine Bond Not Looking So Great Now

Ready to fix this! Presidencia de la Nación Argentina [CC BY 2.0], via Wikimedia Commons About this time last year, Argentina was celebrating its return to fiscal responsibility and the international debt markets with a 100-year bond offering. And why not? It had been a whole three years since the country’s most recent default, its sixth in, well, 100 years. Investors could not get enough of the stuff. After all, Argentina’s new president was a businessman like them and saying all the right things, and they only needed the country to pay its bills for 12 years to make money on the century bonds. What could go wrong? Well, in a word, Argentina. Argentina could go wrong. Argentina was on course to run a large fiscal deficit this year, and Argentina owes a large amount of its debt in U.S. dol...

‘Break On Through To The Other Side’: One Bank Calls Time On The Great Bond Bull Market

Remember “Jamie Dimon Understands That His Future President Self May Have To Deal With A Recession And/Or Higher Yields“? Of course you do. Because you are a person who reads everything Heisenberg writes, aren’t you? Heisenberg is like Frederick Douglass: “an example of somebody who’s done an amazing job and is getting recognized more and more.” No but, self-deprecating humor and obligatory Trump jokes aside, that Dimon piece was actually pretty funny because it underscored the extent to which, when it comes to 10Y yields, everyone is probably thinking a little too hard about “magic” numbers, arbitrary “lines in the sand” and “pain thresholds”, and not hard enough about the “how” and the “why” behind rate rise. The latter considerations are far more important when it comes to assessing sto...

Jack Dorsey Keeps Repping Bitcoin Like It’s 2013

Bitcoin may have fallen 60% from its December highs, but the cryptocurrency industry has never been stronger, as venture capitalists continue to pour money into blockchain companies and sponsor countless conferences where speakers foretell of the coming crypto revolution.   The most prominent booster of blockchain to emerge in the months since bitcoin’s dramatic collapse is Jack Dorsey, the pseudo-philosophic CEO of Twitter and Square. His argument of late is that bitcoin is going to be the currency of the future, telling the Consensus Blockchain Conference in New York Wednesday that “the Internet needs a native currency, and I hope it’s bitcoin.” He was even more bullish in an interview with the U.K. publication The TImes, saying he thought bitcoin would surpass the dollar as the world’s ...

JPMorgan Places Child In Charge Of Childish Cryptocurrencies

To hear him tell it, Jamie Dimon doesn’t get bitcoin or the cryptocurrency craze it spawned. He thinks it’s a doomed fraud, the trading of which is a firing offense. Frankly, he’s not even all that interested in cryptos, because they are quite frankly uninteresting and also unimportant. His bank doesn’t know what to make of them. But as always, the next president of the United States knows more than he’s letting on. Now that JPMorgan’s being forced into the crypto game, Dimon needs a point person to handle it. And who better to do so than an actual child, a 29-year-old with all of four years of Wall Street experience. You know, the kind of person who actually understands the kind of people who trade in bitcoin. It’s a masterstroke. The US bank has just moved Oliver Harris, the head of an i...

Italy’s Populists Furious That Bond Spreads Are Trying To ‘Blackmail’ Them, But The Real Victim Here Is Price Discovery

I don’t know if you’re aware of this or not, but somewhere, buried beneath $15 trillion-ish in central bank liquidity and hiding under the distortions that liquidity has created by effectively forcing investors to knowingly misallocate mountains of capital, are actual markets. To be sure, price discovery (where that entails the participation of price sensitive investors) hasn’t really a been a thing for the better part of the last decade. In one way or another, all the bids are price insensitive these days, whether by definition (e.g., central banks), by choice (e.g., Norway’s SWF) or else by accident (e.g., retail investors not understanding that ETFs don’t generally contribute to price discovery). Everyone else is effectively forced to adopt a similarly “long hair don’t care”-ish strateg...

Christian Sewing Ascribing To A “Let The Bridges I Burn Lead The Way” Philosophy In Managing Deutsche Bank’s US Operations

It’s getting to the point where Christian Sewing is salting the earth for any potential future harvest of US-based banking talent. Not only is Deutsche Bank apparently slow-walking a massive layoff of its US operations, and getting slapped on the wrist yet again by US regulators, but according to The NY Post, Sewing and his team are now looking to save a few shekels by shortening up the timeframe on paid non-compete periods for the aforementioned angry mob of departed Amerikanisch bankers. The German bank is shortening the paid periods during which laid-off bankers cannot go to a competing firm — called “gardening” leaves — ahead off planned mass layoffs, The Post has learned.Deutsche, led by CEO Christian Sewing, is shortening the leaves for some senior bankers to 30 days, down from about...

David Tepper Bought A Football Team With Apple Profits

A year ago, David Tepper and several of his ilk were of the opinion that Apple shares had gone about as far as they were gonna go, which is to say to $150, and sold some. Then he had a change of heart and starting buying again, and buying a lot, building up a tidy 4.6 million share position. And he’s sure glad he did, and that he was wrong about Apple not being a $150 stock, because during the first quarter, when he unloaded all of them, it was more like a $180 stock. Those profits sure did come in handy, because at the same time he was selling the shares, he was buying a $2.2 billion football team. At Tuesday’s prices, the sale of 4,587,852 shares would be worth more than $853 million…. Tepper likely saw a hefty profit thanks to the appreciation of Apple even in recent months. Since Novem...

We’ll Have To Wait And See

Wednesday was one of those days where everyone was still kind of trying to figure out what to make of the previous session and today that meant pondering the future for various assets under a scenario where 10Y yields in the U.S. continue to rise. Here’s what $643 billion in AUM thinks: Basically, Trump’s foreign policy mantra applies: “we’ll have to wait and see.” TRUMP SAYS `WE’LL HAVE TO SEE’ WHETHER N.KOREA MTG WILL HAPPEN All-time highs for small-caps: Don’t ask “Main Street” what’s going on because they clearly don’t have a clue: this is what happened when BofAML asked “Main Street” where stock prices were going: pic.twitter.com/EJYkAvHbqS — Walter White (@heisenbergrpt) May 16, 2018 Yields came off their Tuesday highs initially, but then, Treasurys cheapened anew with yi...

Ray Dalio No Fan Of Trump Tariffs, Big Fan Of Profiting From Them

In the spirit of radical transparency, Ray Dalio would probably admit that he doesn’t have the first goddamned clue what our clown president is doing. He’s certainly more than a little mystified by Trump’s trade “policy,” and especially the tariffs seemingly designed to provoke the Chinese into a trade war. But Ray Dalio knows the Chinese, and he’s pretty sure they’re not as stupid or reckless or unmoored as Donald Trump, which is why he’s fairly confident in saying that the “actual impacts of the tariffs… will be very small.” That being said…. Cleveland-Cliffs Inc., the top U.S. iron-ore producer, is reaping the gains from U.S. President Donald Trump’s steel tariffs…. Bridgewater added 1.89 million shares to his holdings, the second-largest position increase in his portfolio of U.S. liste...

Peter Navarro Sidelined From China Trade Talks Because He’s Peter F@#%ing Navarro

Hey, look, there’s breaking news in the world of basic human logic… White House trade adviser Peter Navarro has been excluded from talks Thursday with China’s top economic envoy aimed at defusing a brewing trade war with the U.S., two administration officials said. Well, no fucking duh. Letting Pete Navarro take part in trade talks with China would be like letting a toddler clean and organize your wedding crystal. Letting Pete Navarro converse with Chinese officials is like naming Kanye West the new ambassador to Wakanda. Letting Peter Navarro negotiate trade with the Chinese is like hiring Harvey Weinstein to run your company’s sexual conduct seminar. It’s almost breathtaking that the Trump Administration has the awareness to do something so logical based on the fact that they HIRED HIM A...