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“Just Close The Whole Thing Up”: CNBC Anchors Melt Down, Beg For Market Closures On Twitter

“Just Close The Whole Thing Up”: CNBC Anchors Melt Down, Beg For Market Closures On Twitter

Few are dealing with the economic and market turmoil with more chaos and less class and resolve than the expert “buy and hold” class over at CNBC, who shockingly never said one word of warning to their retail viewers when the market was doing nothing but going straight up for more than a decade, and instead were dragging mom and pop investors into massively overvalued stocks urging them to buy at all time highs, and who are now melting down before our eyes at the first sight of a substantial market pullback.

Their solution: own the shorts by shutting down the market entirely. Because if one can’t BTFD, is it even a market?

As recently as Friday, when the Dow Jones posted a 2000 point gain on the back of a short squeeze that nearly doubled the indexes gains in the last 15 minutes of the day, there was no talk about markets being defective or needing to close. That was, of course, until the Fed’s $700 billion “quarantative easing” bazooka bailout of markets fizzled spectacularly on Sunday nights and futures promptly went limit down. When it appeared that this plan was failing, some of the industry’s finest began to panic visibly.

Prior to the Fed news, Halftime Report’s Scott Wapner had already called for blanket censorship of Twitter…

Then, after the Fed bazooka failed to calm markets, it sent the popular talking heads into a typing panic, as Wapner started tweeting wildly, criticizing NFL players for signing contracts, prodding the NYSE to “close the floor” and then begging for them to “close the whole thing up” so the market could “start again later”. Perhaps because when things don’t go your way, you can always beg for a reset in some imaginary world where the Fed still runs everything.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

“Maybe This Was Man Made” – CNBC Questions Coronavirus Origins As ZeroHedge Remains Banned On Twitter

“Maybe This Was Man Made” – CNBC Questions Coronavirus Origins As ZeroHedge Remains Banned On Twitter

In keeping with our storied history of presenting readers with plausible theories and allowing them to make their own decisions often times weeks, months or years in advance of the mainstream media figuring them out and/or having the courage to finally touch on them, we’re not surprised to see some of the critical questions we raised about the coronavirus origins weeks ago finally bleed into the mainstream media this morning.

The idea of the coronavirus potentially being a man made virus was a question we raised several weeks ago in this post when we asked “Is This The Man Behind the Global Coronavirus Pandemic?”. In that post, we asked questions about Zhou Peng, one of China’s top virology and immunology experts who works at China’s top-rated biohazard lab, the Wuhan Institute of Virology.

Wuhan Institute of Virology

But the idea of their ever-so-beloved government covering up something from them or not having their best interest in mind was so disturbing the to snowflakes at Twitter, they lashed out by banning Zero Hedge from their platform with little color around why they took such drastic action. Their ban followed a BuzzFeed article claiming we had “doxed” the scientist involved by asking questions and posting the same information listed publicly on his website.  

The ban was so questionable, it sent shockwaves across the mainstream media, even making it as far as CBS National News, who stated: “The financial website Zero Hedge is now barred from Twitter after publishing an article relaying a conspiracy theory that a Chinese scientist might be to blame for the coronavirus outbreak.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

White House Doubts China’s Numbers: 100,000 Coronavirus Cases Unreported

White House Doubts China’s Numbers: 100,000 Coronavirus Cases Unreported

Summary:

  • Japan reports first virus death
  • President Xi says China will minimize impact from virus
  • Chinese leadership scapegoats local officials
  • Death toll and case count soared last night: There are more than 60k cases worldwide, and more than 1300 deaths
  • EIA joins OPEC in warning about upcoming drop in oil use, the first in a decade.
  • HHS Secretary says CDC will announce another confirmed COVID-19 case in US on Thursday
  • 21 people in Spain released from quarantine
  • US admin reportedly questioning China’s reporting
  • White House reportedly “doubts” China’s coronavirus numbers

* * *

Update (1150ET): Citing a senior White House official, CNBC reports that the White House doesn’t have “high confidence” in the coronavirus numbers coming out of China.

The U.S. does “not have high confidence in the information coming out of China” regarding the count of coronavirus cases, a senior administration official told CNBC.

The official also noted that China “continues to rebuff American offers of assistance.”

The current thinking is there must be a reason why they won’t allow the CDC to send over personnel to help with the virus response.

Meanwhile, Jennifer Zeng tweeted out video of migrant workers being forced to sleep outside because of the draconian lockdown.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Bill Gates Wants to Export India’s National ID System Around the Globe

Bill Gates Wants to Export India’s National ID System Around the Globe

It’s not just a social credit score system spreading around the world from China that threatens the free people of the world; India’s Aadhaar National ID program has the full support of Bill Gates and the World Bank as a model for other countries to follow.

Gates said in a 2018 CNBC interview that it was “too bad” if someone thought that Aadhaar was a privacy issue:

The Gates Foundation has pledged to fund the World Bank in an effort to take the ID program to other countries. 

Despite Gates plea that there are no privacy issues with Aadhaar, several court cases have gone to India’s supreme court on grounds of privacy violations. 

The ID system has had serious security breaches, with access to a billion identities being sold for less than $10 through WhatsApp.

One of the court filings (Mathew Thomas vs Union of India) details the rise of China’s social credit system, comparing the Indian Aadhaar initiative to the Chinese program.

Perhaps the most sensational angle to this story is that the same international tech company that provides the infrastructure to Aadhaar also makes drivers licenses in the United States.

Idemia (formerly Morpho), is a billion dollar multinational corporation. It is responsible for building a significant portion of the world’s biometric surveillance and security systems, operating in about 70 countries. Some American clients of the company include the Department of Defense, Homeland Security, and the FBI.

The company website says that Morpho has been “…building and managing databases of entire populations…” for many years.

In the United States, Idemia is involved in the making of state issued drivers licenses in 42 states.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

In Absurd Fiasco, Entire Market Spike Was Due To A CNBC Grammatical Mistake

In Absurd Fiasco, Entire Market Spike Was Due To A CNBC Grammatical Mistake

The farce that is this “market” just took a whole new turn for the surreal.

As we reported earlier, the reason why stocks surged just after 5am EDT is because of a CNBC headline, according to which the US Treasury Secretary said that a US-China trade deal “is” – present tense – 90% complete: a clear indication that a trade deal with China is once again a possibility.

This was quickly propagated by Bloomberg…

  • U.S. TREASURY SECRETARY STEVE MNUCHIN SAYS U.S.-CHINA TRADE DEAL IS 90% COMPLETE

Investing in Emerging and Frontier Markets

… which triggered a flurry of algo buying.

Doubling down, CNBC also tweeted as much saying in a (since deleted) tweet that:

“Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says a U.S.-China trade deal is “about 90% of the way there.” https://t.co/3Q0wvJKKxD pic.twitter.com/of6yH5y3rs”

The problem: CNBC made a huge grammatical mistake, because instead of saying “is”, Mnuchin was actually using the past tense, and what he really said – for those who listened to the video – is that “we were about 90% of the way’ on China trade deal.

Oops.

CNBC also promptly deleted its tweet which said the deal “is” 90% completed, and the current on CNBC headline now says “Mnuchin: ‘We were about 90% of the way’ on China trade deal and there’s a ‘path to complete this.”

The deleted tweet was also revised:

Embedded video

“We were about 90% of the way” on a China trade deal and there’s a “path to complete this,” U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin says. https://cnb.cx/2IL7EMc

So basically Mnuchin said absolutely nothing new, and not only that, he did not provide any optimism that a deal was coming, but as we said earlier, was merely recapping what was already known.

 …click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Fitch Threatens To Cut US Credit Rating As Debt-Ceiling Battle Looms

In what has become a perennial exercise before every debt-ceiling showdown since at least Obama’s first term (when S&P did the unthinkable and cut the US’s coveted AAA credit rating, exposing itself to extensive abuse by Tim Geithner), ratings agencies are starting to beat the credit-rating downgrade drum, with Fitch getting a jump on the competition Wednesday when its head of sovereign ratings warned that an enduring shutdown battle could negatively impact the negotiations over the debt ceiling, which could prompt Fitch to join S&P in eliminating its AAA rating for the US.

During an interview with CNBC and a separate appearance in London (where his comments were recorded by Reuters), Fitch’s global head of sovereign ratings James McCormack warned of a possible cut to its AAA rating for the U.S. sovereign should the shutdown continue to March, noting that the shutdown and debt ceiling battle are adding to anxieties triggered by President Trump’s tax cuts and spending hikes, which have blown out the budget deficit and led to a “meaningful fiscal deterioration.”

“I think people are looking at the CBO (Congressional Budget Office) numbers. If people take the time to look at that you can see debt levels moving higher, you can see the interest burden in the U.S. government moving decidedly higher over the next decade,” James McCormack, Fitch’s global head of sovereign ratings told CNBC’s “Squawk Box Europe” on Wednesday.

There needs to be some kind of fiscal adjustment to offset that or the deficit itself moves higher and you’re essentially borrowing money to pay interest on the debt. So there is a meaningful fiscal deterioration there, going on the United States.”

Watch his interview with CNBC below:

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Rates on Their Way to 10-Year High After Hawkish Fed’s Recent Meeting

hawkish fed meeting

Round and round we go, where the hawkish Fed stops, nobody knows…

There was a bit of tension in the markets last week. This tension stemmed from a prediction that the federal funds rate would be well on its way to a decade high even if the Fed did nothing at their November meeting.

Well, that concern has been justified. In a statement issued after the meeting, the Fed kept their funds rate at 2 – 2.25%, the same range after their September meeting.

But nothing in their statement indicated changes in their plan for another rate hike in December and three more in 2019.

In fact, a CNBC article points to a quarter point increase in December. Assuming this happens, that would send the funds rate to its highest since 2008 (see chart below):

us fed funds rate

The primary credit rate remained steady at 2.75%, according to the Fed statement. That is, until December’s anticipated rate hike.

Another CNBC article published just before the meeting statement was released had a telling statement (emphasis ours):

In recent weeks, financial markets have been gripped by worry and volatility, and some analysts think that in its statement Thursday the Fed may take note of that anxiety as a potential risk to economic growth.

The “No comment” response by the Fed didn’t seem to acknowledge this anxiety.

But the market sure seems to be in a state of worry. Since October 3rd, the Dow Jones has lost 1,566 points as this is written (even after modest recovery).

And the Yield Curve Keeps Flattening

In July, the Fed stopped highlighting the yield curve as an indicator of an imminent recession. Instead, they swept it under the rug.

But according to Patti Domm, the market is still paying attention to it:

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Superbugs Pose A Very Real Threat To Humanity

Superbugs Pose A Very Real Threat To Humanity

Superbugs, those pesky bacteria that have evolved to become resistant to antibiotics, are on the rise and pose a very real threat to humanity. Antimicrobial resistance is a large and growing problem, with the potential for enormous health and economic consequences for the United States and the rest of the world.

According to CNBC, the media outlet which reported on a new OECD (Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development) report, released Wednesday, superbug infections could cost the lives of about 2.4 million people in North America, Europe, and Australia over the next 30 years unless more is done to stem antibiotic resistance, which is already high across the globe.

Resistance is also projected to grow even more rapidly in low- and middle-income countries. In Brazil, Indonesia, and Russia, for example, between 40 percent and 60 percent of infections are already resistant, compared to an average of 17 percent in OECD countries. In these countries, the growth of antimicrobial resistance rates is forecast to be 4 to 7 times higher than in OECD countries between now and 2050.

About 29,500 persons die each year on average in the United States from infections related to eight drug-resistant bacteria. By 2050, that number is expected to rise sharply.  It is estimated that antimicrobial resistance will kill about 1 million people in the United States, in just over 30 years.

The economic toll of this superbug crisis is huge: In the United States alone the health-care costs dealing with antimicrobial resistance could reach $65 billion by 2050, according to the OECD report. That is more than the flu, HIV, and tuberculosis. If projections are correct, resistance to backup antibiotics will be 70 percent higher in 2030 compared to 2005 in OECD countries. In the same period, resistance to third-line treatments will double across EU countries. –CNBC

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Listening In to Killings – and Everything Else

Listening In to Killings – and Everything Else

Listening In to Killings – and Everything Else

It was intriguing that the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the Saudi consulate in Istanbul on October 2 was apparently recorded in some fashion. The BBC reported that “A Turkish security source has confirmed to BBC Arabic the existence of an audio and a video recording. What is not clear is if anyone other than Turkish officials has seen or heard them. One source is cited by the Washington Post saying men can be heard beating Mr Khashoggi; it adds that the recordings show he was killed and dismembered.”

It seemed pretty much an open-and-shut case. There was evidence that the despotic regime of Saudi monarchy, as always regarding themselves as being above decency, law and civilisation in general, had been so annoyed with a Saudi journalist that they killed him. It was an amateur operation, and Mossad (for example) would have done a better and more discreet job (although their assassination of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh in Dubai was a bit botched), but it achieved the Saudis’ objective and sent the message round the world that any of their nationals daring to speak out against the Trump-supported boy dictator in Riyadh, the ruthless Mohammed bin Salman, would pay the ultimate price.

But then the story about a recording of the torture and killing of Jamal Khashoggi underwent modification. Perhaps there wasn’t a Turkish audio and video recording, after all. CNBC broadcast that “The Turkish newspaper Sabah reported that Khashoggi recorded audio of the alleged killing using an app on his Apple Watch and was able to upload the recording to his iPhone and iCloud account,” but the conclusion was that “It would have been nearly impossible for Khashoggi to record audio and upload it to his iPhone or the internet, and it raises questions as to how Turkish officials obtained the audio and video evidence of the alleged killing.”

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Leon Cooperman: “The Whole Structure Of The Market Is Broken”

In a wide-ranging interview on CNBC, Leon Cooperman, chairman and CEO of Omega Advisors, explained that he doe snot see the market as ‘cheap’ or ‘expensive’ currently but warns that traditional value-manager-driven strategies face difficulties because ” all these quantitative trading systems are destroying the structure of the market…particularly that group that buy strength and sells weakness.”

Cooperman goes on to reflect on last week’s mini-crash as being overdone, because “credit was relatively flat” but warns that “It’s crazy…selling begets selling because of these quantitative trading systems,” adding that he thinks “all this fixation and fear about interest rates is misplaced.”

However, he does warn that “the strongest economy in 50 years” could be a problem as “it forces the hand of The Fed.”

Full Transcript

Who knows. I mean basically I think that the whole structure of the market is broken. You know when I came into the let’s put it this way. Whatever success I’ve achieved I think I’ve achieved it because I’ve been very lucky. I have a common sense basically. And I have a strong work ethic. And this whole thing now with all these quantitative trading systems are destroying the structure of the marketyou know particularly that group that buy strength and sells weakness.

So, everyone I know that’s accumulated wealth, whether it’s Warren Buffett, Ken Langone, Mario Gabelli – all friends of mine – I think they made their fortunes that by buying weakness and selling strength. What’s happening now [with the algos] is they’re trend followers and they really are exaggerating the trends up and down. The condition is that normally call for a significant market decline are just simply not present.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Zero-Down Subprime Mortgages Are Back, What Could Possibly Go Wrong?

Ten years after the collapse of Lehman Brothers, banks are once again taking bets on the same type of loans that nearly collapsed the economy amid a flurry of emergency bailouts and unprecedented consolidations.

Bank of America has backed a $10 billion program from Boston-based brokerage Neighborhood Assistance Corporation of America (NACA), to offer zero-down mortgages to low-income borrowers with poor credit scores, according to CNBC. NACA has been conducting four-day events in cities across America to educate subprime borrowers and then lend them money – with a 90% approval rate and interest rates around 4.5%.

It’s total upside,” said AJ Barkley, senior vice president of consumer lending at BofA. “We have seen significant wins in this partnership. Just to be clear, when we get those loans with all the heavy lifting here, we’re over a 90 percent approval, meaning 90 percent of the people who go through this program that we actually underwrite the loans.”

Borrowers can have low credit scores, but have to go through an education session about the program and submit all necessary documents, from income statements to phone bills. Then they go through counseling to understand their monthly budget and ensure they can afford the mortgage payment. The loans are 15- or 30-year fixed with interest rates below market, about 4.5 percent. –CNBC

That’s what’s going to help people who’ve been locked out of homeownership to really become homeowners and to build wealth,” said Bruce Marks, CEO of NACA. “It’s a national disgrace about the low amount of homeownership, mortgages for low- and moderate-income people and for minority homebuyers.”

NACA founder Bruce Marks

To participate in the NACA lending scheme, borrowers can  have credit scores – but will need to go through the education course and submit all necessary documents, “from income statements to phone bills,” reports CNBC. Then they undergo budget counseling to ensure they can afford the mortgage.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Weekly Commentary: Contemporary Finance’s Defect

Weekly Commentary: Contemporary Finance’s Defect

October 3 – CNBC (Jeff Cox): “Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell said the central bank has a ways to go yet before it gets interest rates to where they are neither restrictive nor accommodative. In a question and answer session Wednesday with Judy Woodruff of PBS, Powell said the Fed no longer needs the policies that were in place that pulled the economy out of the financial crisis malaise. ‘The really extremely accommodative low interest rates that we needed when the economy was quite weak, we don’t need those anymore. They’re not appropriate anymore… Interest rates are still accommodative, but we’re gradually moving to a place where they will be neutral… ‘We may go past neutral, but we’re a long way from neutral at this point, probably.'”
Market bulls grimaced. Powell: “We may go past neutral, but we’re a long way from neutral at this point…” CNBC’s Jim Cramer called it “amateurish.” Chairman Powell was certainly candid, something shockingly unusual for a Fed chair. So atypical was his candor, the Chairman was misconstrued as a novice unschooled in the art of modern central banking.

The bottom line is the Fed waited much too long to begin normalizing monetary policy. Moreover, they pre-committed to an extremely gradual path of rates increases. This policy approach essentially ensured that so-called “tightening” measures would fail to tighten financial conditions. Over-liquefied and speculative markets were content to look right through them, confident that cheap liquidity and easy Credit conditions would run unabated. And, clearly, stock gains in the multiple thousands of basis points easily counteracted a couple hundred basis point increase in short-term borrowing costs.
…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

They Want You To Do As They Say, Not As They Do

THEY WANT YOU TO DO AS THEY SAY, NOT AS THEY DO

“Facts are threatening to those invested in fraud.”DaShanne Stokes

Image result for lying ceos

Insiders at US companies unloaded $5.7 billion of their company stock this month, the highest in any September over the past decade, according to TrimTabs Investment Research.  Insiders, which include corporate officers and directors, sold over $10 billion of their company stock in August, also at the fastest pace in 10 years. With the stock market at all time highs and valuations, based on all historically accurate measures, off the charts, it makes sense for knowledgeable insiders to sell high. Of course, if they were expecting the profits of their companies to soar because Trump says we have the best economy in history, why would they be selling?

https://www.zerohedge.com/sites/default/files/inline-images/insider%20sales%20aug%202018.jpg

When these Ivy League educated superstar CEOs go on CNBC, Bloomberg, and Fox to tout their companies and field softball questions from bimbos and boobs disguised as journalists, they proclaim a glorious future and declare their stocks to be undervalued and a screaming bargain. Buy, buy, buy. They talk the talk, but don’t walk the walk. They personally do the opposite with their own funds versus what they do with shareholder funds. Ethics among corporate executives has never been one of the required traits. Lying with a straight face is the key to being a successful CEO in today’s warped amoral world.

While dumping stock like there’s no tomorrow these very same CEOs of the largest US public companies have authorized a breathtaking $827.4 billion of stock buybacks in 2018 — already a record for any year, according to TrimTabs. Annualized, these CEOs will will buyback in excess of $1.2 TRILLION when stocks are at all-time highs. In contrast, in 2009 when they could have bought their stocks at 10 year lows, they bought back less than $100 billion. Buy high and sell low. How can they go wrong?

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Heroes & Whores

HEROES & WHORES

“Certainly one of the most important things I learned is that numbers can be deceiving. There is a logic to mathematics, but there is also the underlying human element that must be considered. Numbers can’t lie, but the people who create those numbers can and do. As so many people have learned, forgetting to include human nature in an equation can be devastating.”Harry Markopolos, No One Would Listen

Image result for harry markopolos

The quote I used from Harry Markopolos’ No One Would Listen book about the Bernie Madoff ponzi scheme in my last article triggered a bittersweet recollection. For me, the experience captured the true nature of our warped financial markets, a culture  glorifying wealthy arrogant criminal assholes, while ignoring or ridiculing honest, hard working, highly intelligent truth tellers.

The picture of Markopolos above shows an average looking middle aged guy, with a five o’clock shadow, bad haircut, and wearing a modestly priced suit and tie. Since reading about his fruitless effort to expose Madoff’s Ponzi Scheme and his fifteen minutes of fame in 2009, I have felt an affinity towards him. We both have a brother and sister. We were both brought up in Catholic households and went to Catholic schools. We both have degrees in finance. We have both had financial careers. We are both married with three sons. And we both believe facts and an accurate assessment of the numbers always reveals the truth.

Through his job as a portfolio manager with a small investment firm Bernie Madoff’s investing record was brought to his attention. As a numbers guy, he immediately began assessing the returns.  Markopolos said he knew within five minutes Madoff’s numbers didn’t add up. It took him another four hours to mathematically prove that they could have only been obtained by fraud.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Why WTI Could Crash In The Coming Weeks

Why WTI Could Crash In The Coming Weeks

Texas Oil

West Texas Intermediate could drop to US$65 a barrel later this year on the back of extra maintenance work at U.S. refineries, Tom Kloza from the Oil Price Information Service has warned. Speaking on CNBC, Kloza said this maintenance season was the last chance for many refineries to hop on the new bunker fuel train by boosting their capacity for low-sulfur diesel and fuel oil.

“The next six to seven weeks we’re going to see demand for crude drop by about 1 to 1.5 million barrels a day. It’s refinery maintenance season,” Kloza said.

The new bunker fuel emission rules, effective from 2020, stipulate that only vessels using fuels with sulfur content of 0.5 percent or less will be allowed to roam the oceans. The change is part of the International Maritime Organization’s strategy to cut carbon emissions from maritime transport by half by 2050.

The change has been touted as beneficial for refiners that are equipped to produce low-sulfur fuel oil and diesel, as well as LNG producers. Yet the adjustment will take time, and during this time demand for crude will be lower. How serious the effect on WTI prices will be remains to be seen, however.

For starters, many of those following WTI must have already factored in maintenance season and winter as weakening demand press down on prices. True, Kloza’s comment that this maintenance season will have a more severe impact on prices makes sense, but this additional maintenance should not come as a surprise to market watchers: there has been a lot of coverage about the IMO fuel rules and there’s likely to be even more in the run-up to its entry into effect.

…click on the above link to read the rest of the article…

Olduvai IV: Courage
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Olduvai II: Exodus
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