Former RBI governor Raghuram Rajan today warned of “policy uncertainty” for the world economy due to there being a “bunch of new leaders” who need to prove they are strong, even as he exuded confidence about all large economies doing well. Without specifically mentioning India, Rajan said, “This is the first time in a long while we have seen all the big engines firing at the same time including the large emerging markets … We have seen trade picking up. “We are seeing early signs of investment intentions. Of course there are always clouds. There are clouds this time also,” he said. In an interview to CNBC, the Chicago Booth School professor and the outspoken economist also said the “good news is some of the fears about the (Trump) administration that it would move immediately to a more protectionist stance haven’t played out”.
“There have been noises but of course the strong action that some people feared against Mexico, against China hasn’t really materialised. That’s the good news,” he said while referring to Donald Trump administration in the US. Talking about the possible risks before the world economy, Rajan who served as RBI governor for three years, said, “There is lot of policy uncertainty right now because of the work the (US) administration is going to do and how much it can achieve.
“But also there is geo-political risk. We have a bunch of strong leaders around the world who are already well entrenched in their strength. “We have a bunch of new leaders who need to prove themselves that they are strong. And in that kind of environment, who has room to back off if in fact there is a confrontation. We have many areas of confrontation.” Rajan further said as the US monetary policy normalises, “we will see more stress” on heavily indebted entities.
With ‘Never-Trump’-ers still convinced he is Hitler and ‘Trump’-ers questioning their reality at his recent flip-floppery, many in the country are asking why should we support this President (even as his approval ratings rise with each warmongering threat). Well there is a simple – and perhaps greedy – reason… the world’s debt and equity markets have gained over $8 trillion since his election and a loss of faith now may leave some big holes.
The value of world equity market capitalization and debt values reached a new record high today of $118 trillion.
This is a more than $8 trillion rise since Donald Trump was elected President and unleashed animal spirits around the world. For someone who has yet to actually put any reforms, stimulus, cuts, laws, into practice – not bad going!
The gains are all concentrated in the ever-hopeful global equity markets…
“I like a low interest rate policy, I must be honest with you,” Donald Trump told the Wall St Journal yesterday. His comments have further fired up already strong US government bonds, with the effects spilling over into European debt this morning. Like their US counterparts, German 10-year bond prices are now around their strongest point of the year.
Mr Trump’s new comments are not the only weight on global bond yields. Among other things, geopolitical nerves and the failure of his healthcare plans have also imposed a longer-term weight.
Still, 10-year Bund yields have sunk by 0.02 percentage points so far today to 0.175 per cent. (Yields fall when prices rise.) That’s the strongest level for Bunds since late December.
US yields, which exert a strong gravitational pull on other core markets, now stand at 2.32 per cent, the lowest since mid-November.
Wall Street failed to hang on to its modest gains on Friday as escalating tensions between the US and Russia over President Donald Trump’s surprise airstrike on Syria weighed on investor sentiment.
The S&P 500 gave up gains of as much as 0.3 per cent to end the day 0.1 per cent lower at 2,355.54. For the week, the index is down 0.3 per cent.
It’s a similar story for the Dow Jones Industrial Average, which closed largely unchanged for the day, as well as for the week at 20.656.10, after having advanced as much as 0.3 per cent earlier on Friday.
The technology-heavy Nasdaq Composite also ended the day flat at 5,877.81 after reaching a session high of 5,892.06.
Stocks had a choppy Friday, with the major indices swinging between minor losses and gains as the markets weighed a weaker-than-expected March jobs report against Mr Trump’s latest foreign-policy shift and a terror attack in Stockholm.
Anyone who has been involved in alternative geopolitical and economic analysis for a decent length of time understands that the establishment power structure thrives according to its ability to either exploit natural crises, or to engineer fabricated crises.
This is not that hard to comprehend, but for some reason there are a lot of people out there who simply assume that global sea-change events just happen “at random,” that the elites are stupid or oblivious, and that all outcomes are a matter of random chance rather than being directed or manipulated. I call these people “intellectual idiots,” because they believe they are applying logic to every scenario but they are sabotaged by an inherent bias which causes them to deny the potential for “conspiracy.”
To clarify, their logic folds in on itself and becomes faulty. They believe themselves objective, but they abandon objectivity when they staunchly refuse to consider the possibility of covert influence by organized special interests. When you internally dismiss the possibility of a thing, no amount of evidence will ever convince you of its reality. This is how the “smartest” people in the room can end up being the dumbest people in the room.
From Russian ties to business conflicts of interests, both Democrats and Republicans are actively working to find chinks in the President’s armor.
But for those with hope of change in their hearts, Democrat Senator Diane Feinstein says there is a possibility that Trump will eventually remove himself from office by filing his own resignation.
Speaking to a crowd during a town hall-style Questions and Answers session, Feinstein was asked how Congress is going to deal with Trump’s alleged illegal activities:
Journalist: We don’t know what’s happening but we know that he is breaking laws every day, he’s making money at Mar-a-lago, he’s getting copyrights in China, he has obvious dealings with Russia, the Dakota pipeline… there’s some many things that he’s doing that are unconstitutional… how are we going to get him out?
Feinstein:We have a lot of people looking at this… Technical people… I think he’s going to get himself out… I think sending sons to another country to make a financial deal for his company and then have that covered with government expenses… I think those government expenses should not be allowed.. we are working on a bill that will deal with conflict of interest… it’s difficult…
Videos of Feinstein speaking to what appears to be a local press pool of reporters and protesters appear below. You can jump to 1:30 in the first video to listen to Feinstein discuss Trump’s conflicts of interests, or watch from the beginning to hear Feinstein’s response to how her husband’s firm directly benefited from bills she voted into law, proving once again that the hypocrisy of socialist Congressional representatives from California has no bounds…
Apple Chief Executive Tim Cook expressed support for globalisation and said China should continue to open its economy to foreign firms, while speaking at a forum in Beijing on Saturday.
“I think it’s important that China continues to open itself and widens the door if you will,” said Cook, speaking at the government-sponsored China Development Forum.
Cook’s comments come amid rising tensions between the U.S. and China, with protectionist rhetoric from U.S. President Donald Trump sparking concern of increased trade friction between the two countries.
“The reality is countries that are closed, that isolate themselves, it’s not good for their people,” said Cook, in a rare public speech.
Apple said on Friday it will set up two new research and development centres in Shanghai and Suzhou in China.
It has pledged to invest more than 3.5 billion yuan ($508 million) in research and development in China.
Apple has been singled out in Chinese media as a potential target for retaliation in the event of a trade war.
The Global Times warned last November if Trump triggered a trade war with China, Beijing would then target firms from Boeing to Apple in a “tit-for-tat” approach.
Article 50 is coming. How to trade GBP when the headlines hit
Article 50 has hung like a anvil around the neck of the pound over the past eight months. The looming exit from the EU was an uncertainty and potential headline shock that stunted bounces in cable.
But as dismal as the bounces have been, there have been a series of higher lows since October. That’s often the sign that something is trying to carve out a bottom.
On top of that, UK data has been much better than economists assumed they would be after the vote.
It’s like the election of Donald Trump. It all has the feeling of something ominous but once it happens, the market can start to look ahead and see things a bit more constructively.
Two things make me believe that a short squeeze could be coming. One is the weekly CFTC positioning data. Obviously, it’s not a definitive picture of market positioning but it’s a good snapshot and shows a crowded short trade.
Second is the bump today. There’s no great reason for it. Scotland is making more waves about another referendum. I think it’s some of those shorts worried about a reversal after Article 50.
Despite U.S. President Donald Trump’s bluster on “historic tax reform” and $1 trillion in infrastructure investment, his visions still remain short on specifics, while the Congress appears headed to an epic clash over a contentious corporate tax plan.
American stocks surged in euphoria after Trump said Feb. 9 that he would announce something “over the next two or three weeks that will be phenomenal in terms of tax.” Yet his address to a joint session of Congress Tuesday night, his first, contained nothing but generalities — a far cry from the promised “phenomenal” plan.
During the campaign, Trump called for cutting the federal corporate tax rate from 35% to 15%. Republican lawmakers in the House of Representatives have drawn up a proposal of their own that would introduce a 20% border adjustment tax to fund a corporate tax rate cut to 20%. This plan would impose no taxes on exports but would bar companies from deducting import-related costs from taxable income.
Trump has not taken a clear stand on the border adjustment tax, and Tuesday’s address only alluded to the issue. “When we ship products out of America, many other countries make us pay very high tariffs and taxes,” he said. “But when foreign companies ship their products into America, we charge them nothing, or almost nothing.” Read More
Stocks rose Monday as the Dow closed at a record high for a twelfth straight day, something it hasn’t done since Jan. 1987 when it ran off 13 straight record closes to start the year, according to Bespoke Investment Group.
The Dow Jones industrial average rose 15.68 points, or 0.1%, to 20,837.44. The Standard & Poor’s 500 index added 2.39, or 0.1%, to 2369.73 and the Nasdaq composite index gained 16.59, or 0.3%, to 5861.90.
Energy stocks led the gainers as the price of crude rose. Benchmark U.S. crude was up 20 cents, or 0.4%, at $54.15 a barrel in New York. The contract fell 46 cents on Friday.
Investors were looking ahead to President Donald Trump’s speech to Congress on Tuesday for details of promised tax cuts and infrastructure spending. U.S. stocks have benefited from Trump’s promise of pro-business changes, but investors are waiting to see how large and rapid those changes will be.
During a meeting with governors Monday, Trump noted that his upcoming budget would include a big boost to defense spending. The White House separately said that the budget would include a $54 billion increase in defense spending while imposing corresponding cuts to domestic programs and foreign aid.
Investors were also looking ahead to Trump’s speech Tuesday to a joint session of Congress for details of how he plans to carry out promises to cut taxes and step up infrastructure spending.
n Europe, Germany’s DAX rose 0.2%, while France’s CAC-40 was flat. London’s FTSE-100 added 0.1% Major indexes in Asia posted losses. Tokyo’s Nikkei 225 index fell 0.9%. Hong Kong’s Hang Seng slid 0.2%. Seoul’s Kospi shed 0.4%.