Home » Posts tagged 'nikkei'

Tag Archives: nikkei

Olduvai
Click on image to purchase

Olduvai III: Catacylsm
Click on image to purchase

Post categories

Nevertheless, he persisted

Nevertheless, he persisted

Today, the Nikkei Asian Review reports that Nomura Holdings, Inc. (8604 on the Tokyo Stock Exchange) expects to close over 30 of its 156 domestic retail branches, “previously considered a sacred cow by the group.” In addition, Nomura will eliminate roughly half of its 11 administrative departments and “revisit its policy of maintaining hubs in Japan, the U.S. and Europe.” That comes after the investment bank reported a ¥101.2 billion ($911 million) loss for the nine months ended Dec. 31, its worst such showing since 2008. 

Nomura’s misadventures are no outlier. In early March, Mizuho Financial Group, Inc. was forced to take a ¥680 billion write down that included ¥150 billion worth of losses related to its portfolio of overseas bonds (Almost Daily Grant’sMarch 7). More broadly, the Tokyo Stock Exchange Bank Index has seen its return on equity decline in each of the last five years, to 5.33% in 2018 from 9.77% in 2013. The index trades at a paltry 0.47 times book value, worse than even the EURO Stoxx Bank Index’s similarly-depressed 0.62 price-to-book ratio and far below the 1.18 times book valuation commanded by the U.S. KBW Bank Index. 

Of course, much like Europe, Japan’s macro-economic backdrop features negative interest rates and aggressive central bank asset purchases. The BoJ has accumulated ¥557 trillion in assets, equivalent to 101% of 2018 nominal GDP (that compares to about 39% in Europe and 19% in the U.S.), as policymakers continue to up the ante in their quest to achieve a 2% measured rate of inflation.  

With its gargantuan portfolio, the BoJ wields substantial control of the country’s capital markets. As noted by the Financial Times on Sunday, the central bank now holds close to 80% of outstanding ETF assets, equating to approximately 5% of Japan’s total market capitalization, while data from Bloomberg pegs the BoJ ownership of the Japanese Government Bond Market at 43%.  

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

Nikkei Tumbles, Sliding Into Bear Market

A few hours after the S&P tumbled over 2.7%, sliding into a bear market for the first time in a decade, Japan’s Nikkei 225 – which had been sliding gradually for the past week – dropped sharply by over 3.2% at the open…

… becoming the latest index to tumble into a bear market, sliding over 20% from its October 2 peak.

Meanwhile, the broader Topix index – which had already entered a bear market from its January 2018 highs – plunged even more, dumping over 4.3% and was trading at levels last seen in November 2016, as more than 2 years of gains have been largely wiped out in just the past 3 months as the Christmas Eve rout launched in the US goes global.

Going… Going… Gone! The EU Begins to Splinter

Early this morning one might have been forgiven for thinking that Japan had probably just been hit by another tsunami. The Nikkei was down 1,300 points, the yen briefly soared above par. Gold had intermittently gained 100 smackers – if memory serves, the biggest nominal intra-day gain ever recorded (with the possible exception of one or two days in early 1980). Here is a picture of Haruhiko Kuroda in front of his Bloomberg monitor this morning:

kuroda headThis can’t be happening… please… let me wake up and realize that it was all just a bad dream…

Photo credit: Reuters

The War Street Journal immediately exhorted the poor man to “go big or go home” – in an article brimming with the usual Keynesian central planning clap-trap (we need more inflation, a strong currency is “bad”, rev up the printing presses, yada-yada…)

Touching less than 99 yen to the dollar, this brings Japan’s currency back to where it started just as Abenomics was ramping up in 2013. With interest rates already negative, a weak currency is one of the few tools Japan has at its disposal. A strong currency will be devastating for efforts to engineer inflation. Japan will need to prepare a response. 

[…]

Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda will be under pressure to go deeper on negative rates, even though doing so in the first place, in January, has seen the yen strengthen, not weaken.

[ed. note: yes, do more of what hasn’t worked! This is also straight from the Keynesian playbook…]

[…]

If negative rates aren’t the answer, what is? Increasing asset purchases of bonds and exchange-traded funds are an option, but there is limited room to expand those programs and the effect, only marginal at this point. Mr. Kuroda has been dismissive of more aggressive helicopter money-like moves that toe into fiscal policy. 

 

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

Kuroda-San in the Mouth of Madness

Zerohedge recently reported on an interview given by Lithuanian ECB council member Vitas Vasiliauskas, which demonstrates how utterly deluded the central planners in the so-called “capitalist” economies of the West have become. His statements are nothing short of bizarre (“we are magic guys!”) – although he is of course correct when he states that a central bank can never “run out of ammunition”.

Bank of Japan (BOJ) Governor Haruhiko Kuroda attends a news conference at the BOJ headquarters in Tokyo, Japan, December 18, 2015.BoJ governor Haruhiko Kuroda     Photo credit: Toru Hanai / Reuters

The mental state of BoJ governor Haruhiko Kuroda may be even more precarious though. As Marketwatch reports, he recently gave an interview to German financial newspaper Börsen-Zeitung, in which he inter alia threatened even more BoJ intervention:

Bank of Japan Gov. Haruhiko Kuroda said the central bank “can still ease [its] monetary policy substantially” if necessary, in an interview with German financial newspaper Börsen-Zeitung published Wednesday. 

This is per se not surprising, although one wonders what Kuroda thinks can possibly be achieved by upping the ante on this:

1-BoJ assets vs. the NikkeiAssets held by the BoJ vs. the Nikkei index – April 1999 = 100 – click to enlarge.

We have added the Nikkei Index to the chart of BoJ assets above because inflating stock prices is one of the central bank’s declared goals – its stake in ETFs listed on the Tokyo Stock Exchange has in the meantime exploded to more than 50% (which we believe is eventually going to create a socialist calculation-type problem).

The results of this mad-cap buying spree are decidedly underwhelming so far. Although the pockets of central banks are of unlimited depth, this is also no big surprise, as central bankers are probably the worst traders in the world.  One also wonders how further monetary easing is supposed to “improve” on this situation:

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

Former IMF Chief Economist Admits Japan’s “Endgame” Scenario Is Now In Play

Former IMF Chief Economist Admits Japan’s “Endgame” Scenario Is Now In Play

Back in October 2014, just after the BOJ drastically expanded its QE operation, we warned that the biggest risk facing the BOJ (and the ECB, and the Fed, and all other central banks actively soaking up securities from the open market) was a lack of monetizable supply. We cited Takuji Okubo, chief economist at Japan Macro Advisors in Tokyo, who said that at the scale of its current debt monetization, the BOJ could end up owning half of the JGB market by as early as in 2018. He added that “The BOJ is basically declaring that Japan will need to fix its long-term problems by 2018, or risk becoming a failed nation.”

Which is why 17 months ago we predicted that, contrary to expectations of even more QE from Kuroda, we said “the BOJ will not boost QE, and if anything will have no choice but to start tapering it down – just like the Fed did when its interventions created the current illiquidity in the US govt market – especially since liquidity in the Japanese government market is now non-existent and getting worse by the day.”

As part of our conclusion, we said we do not “expect the media to grasp the profound implications of this analysis not only for the BOJ but for all other central banks: we expect this to be summer of 2016’s business.”

Since then, the forecast has panned out largely as expected: both the ECB and BOJ, finding themselves collateral constrained, were forced to expand into other, even more unconventional methods of easing, whether it be NIRP in the case of the BOJ, or the outright purchases of corporate bonds as the ECB did a month ago.

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

Japan Prints Additional ¥10,000 Bills As People Scramble To Stash Away Cash

Japan Prints Additional ¥10,000 Bills As People Scramble To Stash Away Cash

Long before negative interest rates shifted from the monetary twilight zone into the mainstream (with some 30% of global government bonds now trading with a subzero yield), one organization wrote a report warning about the dangers of NIRP. The NY Fed. Back in 2012, NY Fed staffers wrote “If Interest Rates Go Negative . . . Or, Be Careful What You Wish For” it warned “if rates go negative, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Bureau of Engraving and Printing will likely be called upon to print a lot more currency as individuals and small businesses substitute cash for at least some of their bank balances.

Then, last October, Bank of America looked at the savings rates across European nations which had implemented NIRP and found something disturbing: instead of achieving what what central banks had expected, it was leading to precisely the opposite outcome: “household savings rates have also risen. For Switzerland and Sweden this appears to have happened at the tail end of 2013 (before the oil price decline). As the BIS have highlighted, ultra-low rates may perversely be driving a greater propensity for consumers to save as retirement income becomes more uncertain.”

The evidence:

Which was to be expected by most people exhibiting common sense: NIRP by definition is deflationary, and as such as prompts consumers to delay consumption, and as a result to save as much as possible, if not in the banks where their savings may soon be taxed under NIRP regimes, then in cash.

And nowhere if the failure of NIRP – and unconventional monetary policy in general – more evident than what just happened in Japan, where according to Japan Timesthe Finance Ministry plans to increase the number of ¥10,000 bills in circulation, amid signs that more people are hoarding cash.

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

A Quarter Century Of Monetary Voodoo

A Quarter Century Of Monetary Voodoo

A Witless Tool of the Deep State?

Finance or politics? We don’t know which is jollier. The Republican presidential primary and Fed monetary policies seem to compete for headlines. Which can be most absurd? Which can be most outrageous? Which can get more page views?

Politics, led by Donald J. Trump, was clearly in the lead… until Wednesday. Then, the money world, with Janet L. Yellen wearing the yellow jersey, spurted ahead in the Hilarity Run.

Yellen_cartoon_08.18.2014

“Cautious Yellen drives global stocks near 2016 peak,” reported a Reuters headline. The story itself was a remarkable tribute to the whole jackass money system.

At first glance, “cautious Yellen” would seem incongruous with stocks rising to “near 2016 peak.” Caution normally means playing it cool, not encouraging speculation.

But it wasn’t so much what Ms. Yellen said that sent stocks racing ahead. It was what she hasn’t done. And she hasn’t done exactly what we thought she wouldn’t do. That is, so far this year, she has not taken a single step in the direction of a “normal” monetary policy; our guess is that she never will.

Why not? Is it because she is a witless tool of Deep State cronies? Is it because her economic theory is silly, superficial, and simpleminded? Or is it because she and her predecessor, Ben Bernanke, have done so much damage to the normal world that there is nothing to go back to?

A coo-coo for the stock market…

“Cautious Yellen drives global stocks near 2016 peak,” reported a Reuters headline. The story itself was a remarkable tribute to the whole jackass money system.

At first glance, “cautious Yellen” would seem incongruous with stocks rising to “near 2016 peak.” Caution normally means playing it cool, not encouraging speculation.

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

Citi: “We Have A Problem”

Citi: “We Have A Problem”

In his latest must read presentation, Citigroup’s Matt King continues to expose and mock the increasing helplessness and cluelessness of central bankers, something this website has done since 2009 knowing full well how it all ends (incidentally not in a deflationary whimper, quite the opposite).

Take Matt King’s September 2015 piece in which he warned that one of the most serious problems facing the world is that we may have hit its debt ceiling beyond which any debt creation is merely pushing on a string leading to slower growth and further deflation. Or his more recent report which explained why despite aggressive easing by the BOJ and ECB, asset prices continue to fall as a result of quantitative tightening by EM reserve managers and China, which are soaking up the same liquidity injected by DM central banks.

Overnight, he put it all together in a simple and elegant way that only Matt King can do in a presentation titled ominously “Don’t look down: You might find too many negatives.”

In it he first proceeds to lay out how things have dramatically changed in recent months compared to prior years: first, the “appalling” asset returns and the “rising dislocations” between asset prices in recent months and especially in 2016, or a broken market which is not just about Crude (with correlation regimes flipping back and forth), or China (as YTD bank returns in Japan and Switzerland are far worse than those in the China-exposed Eurozone), as appetite for risk has effectively disappeared. Worse, as the Japanese NIRP showed, incremental easing in the form of QE actually triggered ongoing weakness, sending both the Nikkei and the USDJPY plunging, suggesting that central bank grip on markets is almost gone.

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

A 918 Point Stock Market Crash In Japan And Deutsche Bank Denies That It Is About To Collapse

A 918 Point Stock Market Crash In Japan And Deutsche Bank Denies That It Is About To Collapse

Financial Crisis 2016On Tuesday junk bonds continued to crash, the price of oil briefly dipped below 28 dollars a barrel, Deutsche Bank was forced to deny that it is on the verge of collapse, but the biggest news was what happened in Japan.  The Nikkei was down a staggering 918 points, but that stock crash made very few headlines in the western world.  If the Dow had crashed 918 points today, that would have been the largest single day point crash in all of U.S. history.  So what just happened in Japan is a really big deal.  The Nikkei is now down 23.1 percent from the peak of the market, and that places it solidly in bear market territory.  Overall, a total of 16.5 trillion dollars of global stock market wealth has been wiped out since the middle of 2015.  As I stated yesterday, this is what a global financial crisis looks like.

Just as we saw during the last financial crisis, the big banks are playing a starring role, and this is definitely true in Japan.  Right now, Japanese banking stocks are absolutely imploding, and this is what drove much of the panic last night.  The following numbers come from Wolf Richter

  • Mitsubishi UFJ Financial Group plunged 8.7%, down 47% from June 2015.
  • Mizuho Financial Group plunged 6.2%, down 38% since June 2015.
  • Sumitomo Mitsui plunged 6.2%, down 26% since May 2015
  • Nomura plunged a juicy 9.1%, down 42% since June 2015

A lot of analysts have been very focused on the downturn in China in recent months, but I think that it is much more important to watch Japan right now.

I have become fully convinced that the Japanese financial system is going to play a central role in the initial stages of this new global financial meltdown, and so I encourage everyone to keep a close eye on the Nikkei every single night.

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

Kuroda Suggests “No Limit” To More NIRP Measures To Stall Japanese Bond Yields, Stocks, USDJPY Plunge

Kuroda Suggests “No Limit” To More NIRP Measures To Stall Japanese Bond Yields, Stocks, USDJPY Plunge

With Nikkei 225 down 800 points from post-NIRP highs and USDJPY having almost roundtripped, there is little wonder that Japanese government bond yields are collapsing to imply considerably deeper NIRP to come. With 10Y JGBs on the verge of a negative yield, 2Y yields are now at -17bps (well below Kuroda’s -10bps level). Japanese bank stocks are a bloodbath with Nomura leading the way lower.

We’re gonna need more NIRP…

  • *JAPAN’S TOPIX INDEX FALLS 3.3% TO 1,404.75 AT MORNING CLOSE
  • *JAPAN’S NIKKEI 225 FALLS 3.1% TO 17,194.17 AT MORNING CLOSE

 

And that is what bonds are implying…

  • *JAPAN’S 2-YEAR YIELD FALLS TO RECORD MINUS 0.17%
  • *JAPAN’S 10-YEAR BOND YIELD FALLS TO RECORD 0.045%

With the entire curve to 8Y below BoJ’s -10bps level…

And Japanese bank stocks are plunging…

Led by Nomura’s 11%-plus plunge – the most since 2011…

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

Behold Unintended Consequences: Japan Cancels 10Y Auction For First Time Ever Due To Sub-Zero Rates

Behold Unintended Consequences: Japan Cancels 10Y Auction For First Time Ever Due To Sub-Zero Rates

 Dear Bank of Japan, how do you spell unintended consequences:
  • PLANNED MARCH SALE OF 10-YEAR JAPANESE GOVERNMENT BONDS THROUGH BANKS TO BE CANCELED AMID EXPECTED BELOW-ZERO YIELDS – NIKKEI
  • JAPAN’S MINISTRY OF FINANCE IS EXPECTED TO ANNOUNCE WEDNESDAY THE FIRST-EVER DECISION TO CALL OFF SALES OF 10-YEAR JGBS- NIKKEI

Here is the full Nikkei report on this absolute stunner of a development:

The planned March sale of 10-year Japanese government bonds through banks to retail investors, municipalities and others will be canceled amid expected below-zero yields following the Bank of Japan’s recent move to adopt negative interest rates.

The Ministry of Finance is expected to announce Wednesday the first-ever decision to call off sales of 10-year JGBs.

The JGBs in question are sold through Japan Post Bank and regional banks in 50,000 yen ($415) units. The holder can cash out this new type of bond ahead of maturity. With the ministry already having suspended sales of two- and five-year instruments, all sales will end. But variable-rate 10-year JGBs for retail investors will still be offered.

Winning bids at the ministry’s auction of 10-year JGBs on Tuesday translated to a record-low average yield of 0.078%. As of Monday, nearly 70% of JGBs on the market already had negative yields, according to the Japan Securities Dealers Association.

Corporations and municipalities have started delaying their own issuances. Daiwa Securities Group has dropped plans to set conditions later this week for the issuance of seven- and 10-year straight bonds this month. The brokerage decided to take a fresh look at JGB yields and investor demand and said it has not decided when to proceed.

The Nagoya Expressway Public Corp., which had planned to float bonds later this week, has postponed the setting of conditions to next week.

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

 

“Pandora’s Box Is Open”: Why Japan May Have Started A ‘Silent Bank Run’

“Pandora’s Box Is Open”: Why Japan May Have Started A ‘Silent Bank Run’

As extensively discussed yesterday in the aftermath of the BOJ’s stunning decision to cut rates to negative for the first time in history (a decision which it appears was taken due to Davos peer pressure, a desire to prop up stock markets and to punish Yen longs, and an inability to further boost QE), there will be consequences – some good, mostly bad.

As Goldman’s Naohiko Baba previously explained, NIRP in Japan will not actually boost the economy: “we do have concerns about the policy transmission channel. Policy Board Member Koji Ishida, who voted against the new measures, said that “a further decline in JGB yields would not have significantly positive effects on economy activity.” We concur with this sentiment, particularly for capex. The key determinants of capex in Japan are the expected growth rate and uncertainty about the future as seen by corporate management according to our analysis, while the impact of real long-term rates has weakened markedly in recent years.”

What the BOJ’s NIRP will do, is result in a one-time spike in risk assets, something global stock and bond markets have already experienced, and a brief decline in the Yen, one which traders can’t wait to fade as Citi FX’s Brent Donnelly explained yesterday.

NIRP will also have at most two other “positive” consequences, which according to Deutsche Bank include 1) reinforcing financial institutions’ decisions to grant new loans and invest in securities (if only in theory bnecause as explained further below in practice this may very well backfire); and 2) widening interest rate differentials to weaken JPY exchange rates, which in turn support companies’ JPY-based sales and profit, for whom a half of consolidated sales are from overseas.

That covers the positive. The NIRP negatives are far more troubling. The first one we already noted yesterday, when Goldman speculated that launching NIRP could mean that further QE is all tapped out:

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

 

The Fed’s Stunning Admission Of What Happens Next

The Fed’s Stunning Admission Of What Happens Next

Following an epic global stock rout, one which has wiped out trillions in market capitalization, it has rapidly become a consensus view (even by staunch Fed supporters such as the Nikkei Times) that the Fed committed a gross policy mistake by hiking rates on December 16, so much so that this week none other than former Fed president Kocherlakota openly mocked the Fed’s credibility when he pointed out the near record plunge in forward breakevens suggesting the market has called the Fed’s bluff on rising inflation.

All of this happened before JPM cut its Q4 GDP estimate from 1.0% to 0.1% in the quarter in which Yellen hiked.

To be sure, the dramatic reaction and outcome following the Fed’s “error” rate hike was predicted on this website on many occasions, most recently two weeks prior to the rate hike in “This Is What Happened The Last Time The Fed Hiked While The U.S. Was In Recession” when we demonstrated what would happen once the Fed unleashed the “Ghost of 1937.”

As we pointed out in early December, conveniently we have a great historical primer of what happened the last time the Fed hiked at a time when it misread the US economy, which was also at or below stall speed, and the Fed incorrectly assumed it was growing.

We are talking of course, about the infamous RRR-hike of 1936-1937, which took place smack in the middle of the Great Recession.

Here is what happened then, as we described previously in June.

[No episode is more comparable to what is about to happen] than what happened in the US in 1937, smack in the middle of the Great Depression.

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

A Disturbing Warning From UBS: “Buy Gold” Because A 30% Bear Market Is Coming

A Disturbing Warning From UBS: “Buy Gold” Because A 30% Bear Market Is Coming

As Wall Street axioms (Santa rally, January effect, as goes January etc.) are rapidly falling by the wayside at the start of 2016, following a chaotic but return-less 2015, the UBS analysts who correctly forecast last year’s volatility are out with their forecast for 2016. It’s simple – Sell Stocks, Buy Gold.

UBS Technical Analysts Michael Riesner and Marc Müller warn the seven-year cycle in equities is rolling over. 

UBS expects S&P 500 to move into a 2Q top and fall into a full size bear market, with risk of a 20% to 30% correction into minimum later 2016 and worst case early 2017

“The comeback of volatility was the title of our 2015 strategy. Last year’s rise in volatility was in our view just the beginning for a dramatic rise in cross-asset volatility over the next few years,”

Noting that while equities have had a good run, Risener and Muller warn, “we are definitely more in the late stages of a bull market instead of being at the beginning of a new major breakout.”

Our key message for 2016 is that even if we were to see another extension in price and time, we see the 2009 bull cycle in a mature stage, which suggests the risk of seeing a significant bear cycle event in one to two years.

S&P-500 trades in 4th longest bull market since 1900 Bear markets are defined by a market decline of 20% and more. It’s a fact that since its March 2009 low, with 82 months and a performance of 220%, the S&P-500 now trades in its 4th longest and 5th strongest bull market since 1900. So from this angle alone we suggest the 2009 bull cycle has reached a mature stage.

Keep in mind, since 1937 the average downside in a 7-year cycle decline was 34%…

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

 

Oil Production Boom Is Not What It Seems As Future Investments Are Uncertain

Oil Production Boom Is Not What It Seems As Future Investments Are Uncertain

Amid a holiday-dappled week, we barrel in to Wednesday without the presence of the weekly oil inventory report; we will have to wait until tomorrow at 11am (EDT) for that. We do, however, get the API report after market close, although the EIA’s Short Term Energy Outlook is out in the meantime to provide us with something to get our teeth into.

Economic data again remains scant, with the only morsel of note already released from the UK in the form of a big miss for industrial production (-0.4% MoM vs. +0.1% expected). Despite a rampant rise in global equity markets overnight, the crude complex is staggering lower in the face of gale-force headwinds from a stronger US dollar.

Once again, we are playing pass the parcel of positive sentiment from continent to continent, with US equities rallying strongly yesterday on hopes of further stimulus out of China. China rallied in kind in response to this, while Japanese equities trumped them all. The Nikkei 225 index jumped 7.7% overnight – the biggest jump since October 2008 – as it played catch-up with other global benchmarks:

Nikkei 225 Equity Index

In terms of oil-related info, perhaps the scariest data point for the day comes out of the UK (not the industrial production number, we already mentioned that), for according to a UK industry lobby group, North Sea oil and gas investments could drop as much as 80% by 2017 amid the lower oil price environment.

In less scary news, the below graphic from the EIA today shows Saudi Arabian oil exports for the first half of the year. It says Saudi Arabia sent 4.4 million barrels per day to seven major trading partners in Asia, which accounted for more than half of Saudi’s total crude oil exports. In percentage terms versus last year, it says Saudi is maintaining its market share:

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

Olduvai IV: Courage
In progress...

Olduvai II: Exodus
Click on image to purchase