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Saturday, April 26, 2014

movie review: War of the Worlds


OK, so War of the Worlds was on TV last night or a few nights ago, I forget.

Here's the trailer for the movie:



Now it's a Spielberg movie with Tom Cruise, so I would think nobody cares if I give away how the movie ends. After all, you're not going to want to watch it for the plot, because there really isn't one, beyond "aliens attack, there are explosions," and - just because it's fucking Spielberg - "a divorced father struggles to protect his children".

In summary, you're going because you want explosions, and maybe also to watch Tom Cruise rescue his children from the evil Thetan army led by Katie Holmes.

Still, I'm going to spoil the ending for you, so here's a spoiler break.

===SPOILER ALERT===

Friday, April 25, 2014

A tiny bit of blerging to end the week


Here's just a few news items of variable import:

Calculated Risk - a few US Q1 GDP forecasts. Since there's been a month of good weather, I expect the US market to puke its balls out its nose when it sees that consensus 1.1% print. Because reasons. The question is, what happens over the following months as GDP improves?

Bonddad - UK recovery gaining momentum. Charts to back him up.

der Spargel - Germans love deflation. A nice article on how ECB deflation-fighting measures are hated by the Germans, since the Germans absolutely love deflation.

Arse Technica - ding dong, the witch is dead. Google Plus, the only thing in this world hated more than
Hitler, is now officially kaput.

Stonekettle Station - basically complaining about stuff again. Jim Wright on information warfare as practiced by the US right wing.


IS GOLD GOING UP YET?: here's what you need to know


Here's gold's chart:


Ha ha. Nice try. Gold's only popped back up to its short-term EMA, and it's done so on supposed escalation of the Ukraine conflict (again) and a slightly unimpressive US jobs report.

This is not a very convincing chart.

And the fundamentals for gold right now, by the way, are also not convincing.

I'll be convinced when GLD rockets through $130 on volume. Til then this isn't even tradeable.


EMERGING MARKETS? THE SHINE IS OFF: here's what you need to know


SPY and QQQ are both pooping a lung today, but it might be interesting to look a little deeper.

Here's SPY versus EEM:


You can see that emerging markets became a fad by early March, and the long-term trend of SPY outperforming EEM that had gone on since 2011 reversed. Temporarily. You can see this better on the weekly:


See? US has outperformed the emerging markets since 2011 at least. The recent EEM buying binge of the past month only took the ratio down to its weekly SMA(50). It's been down there before, and always turned around and gone back up. Because the US is awesome and the emerging markets suck.



And the same situation for the QQQ vs EEM ratio. This despite there supposedly being a tech bubble that's bursting and all. Frankly, the chart proves that if there's a bursting bubble in anything, it's in emerging markets, not US technology stocks.


Friday videos - Luscious Jackson on French TV


Here's Luscious Jackson, doing their one hit, on French TV.



I actually really liked their first album. I must have bought it at one point - I think I know the record store where I found it - and did sound very forward for its time.



Thursday, April 24, 2014

COLDPLAY IS NOW K-POP: here's what you need to know


So I was surfing around YouTube when I came across "K-Pop", which is Korean pop music generally sung by girl groups.

So I decide to expand my cultural horizons and view a few videos by a band called Girls' Generation. (Background: the band consists of a large number of leggy skinny girls, and they sing songs about boys and dancing.)

Then I realize there's something funny on the right-hand "recommendations" pane at YouTube:



So apparently, YouTube assumes that if you like K-pop, you must also like Coldplay.

That's pretty sad.


Some evening reading


Here's some stuff to read:


Ritholtz - Einhorn's premature bubble call. As an aside, seeing the word "bubble" on CNN at 6AM a few days ago was what made me decide to just put the rest of my money into an S&P ETF.

Calculated Risk - hotel occupancy rates above last year's levels. Thus the US economy still isn't collapsing.

Mineweb - gold ETFs losing shine in India. Of course they are; it's not physical gold.

BI - textbook price inflation is out of control. When college textbooks are skyrocketing in price faster than medicine, you know something's wrong. And it really truly is the fault of the professors, and they better fucking smarten up before the local university paradigm disappears altogether. This is the 21st century, and people will be switching to internet education.


Well, gold is boned


Gold just did this:


Which is unfortunate because keeping above $1280 was kinda important for the chart:


That's broken support, boys!

It'll be interesting to see how the gold miners do today - will they break support as well? Or will people assume gold is just going down to $1260 or so? There seems to have been a lot of past volume at that price.

And -ahem- how will Goldman Sachs' new gold miner buy recommendations perform today?


Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Emerging markets - about time they roll over


Here's EEM daily:


It challenged the EMA, then rose up, only achieved a lower high with decreasing volume as MACD rolled over, and is now challenging the EMA again. I'm hoping it finally starts dropping now cos I'm 2x short this dog via HJD.




$38.50 would be a reasonable downside target - nothing more than a 10% drop and a continuation of its long-term sideways trend. Then again, maybe it only falls as far as $40.50? That'll be where you'll find the -2SD line and the 50SMA in the daily chart in a week or two.

And $40.50 or so is in the vicinity of a meaty horizontal support/resistance line on the daily.

We'll see how it goes.


Some stuff to read, including a special link from the Cookie Monster himself!


Here's more information:

Dani Rodrik - the relation between extents of globalization and level of industrialization. Interesting idea, worth thinking about. Interesting blog generally.

Brett Steenbarger - three perspectives on stock market strength. Read it and weep, top-callers!

Doctor Who and the Cybermen - phase-space charts of the Case-Shiller index indicate housing reflation. So why are there two islands of stability in the chart, and do US prices really have to go back to the second? Mickeyman's response is "I'll explain later".

FT beyond brics - what's next for the fragile five? Was the recent EM strength the beginning of a new upward trend for EMs, or rather just the last bull correction before another long swandive downward?

Mining.com - Chile turning copper mines into tourist attractions. Hey, interesting idea. I'd personally love to travel to the world's most earthquake-prone country, just to go up high into a uninhabitable mountainous moonscape to look at a hole so big that you'd think Galactus got peckish. No really.

Permashave Dave - I finally made bail, what have I missed? Where he talks about how he likes chixxx with bangs. I guess. I dunno.

Columbia.edu - unraveling the mystery of Indian monsoon failure during el Nino (pdf). A link from none other than the Cookie Monster himself, meant to persuade me that I shouldn't expect an Indian drought this year. Great, now he's making me read things and edumacate myself.


GDX chart is doing something interesting....


Here, look at this:


Don't see it?

Let me draw a magical line with my magical TA juju-stick:


Looks like $23-$24 is an important area of support, and the chart has just bounced off it.

Interesting that it was at support yesterday when the Vampire Squid issued its buy reccie on gold miners.

I'm finding the chart interesting, but not interested in diddling with it yet.


Tuesday, April 22, 2014

Rowan Atkinson as Doctor Who?


Further to the previous, here's another thing I missed in 2011 when I was wasting all my time with fruitcakes like Max Keiser and Alex Jones.




Did you know there was a Green Day/Timelords/Doctor Who Theme mashup?


OK, this is kinda funny.



Green Day's "Holiday" meets The Timelords' "Doctorin' the Tardis" meets the Doctor Who theme song.

Apparently this was a famous thing in 2011 and I missed it cos I was dicking around with shitty junior miners and reading Zerohedge like a tard.


A bit of reading, including justified mockery of Goldman Sachs


I've spent the day doing a comparative life-cycle cost-benefit analysis for full illumination, for a decision between build-now versus a 15 year deferment.

And y'know? It's fun doing this kind of stuff. Even the engineers in my office don't seem to know how to do these sorts of analyses.

Thus it makes me look like an utter genius compared to my bosses, and thus it's so fun.

Anyway, here's some news:

Reformed Borker (Bork Bork Bork!) - 361 Capital weekly research briefing. Blaine Rollins is always a necessary weekly read, right up there with NDD's week-end indicators summary. So read him.

Bonddad - USTs are the surprise YTD winner. And given the Fed has asserted that US yields are going up, this is the exact opposite to what the market's supposed to be doing.

Reuters - Indian election cash restrictions to dent gold imports. Apparently bribery is so bad in election season that they have to pass laws limiting how much cash you can have on your person.

IKN - Goldman Sachs follows its $1050 gold call with... buy recommendations for gold stocks?!? Cue perplexed Jackie Chan meme:


If I get sent a copy of this GS paper by an unknown villainous copyright scofflaw, I will definitely enjoy reading it to see how they justify buying FNV or Detour in expectation of $1050 gold. Who knows, maybe the various departments at GS just don't bother talking to each other?

Or maybe GS has a few million shares of Detour that they need to unload?

Monday, April 21, 2014

I stumbled across another Brent Cook interview


I've been pretty much ignoring the sad-sack goldbug sector entirely for the past few weeks, except for the odd bit of sarcasm of course, ever since the charts broke down.

Well, I was hanging out on YouTube, and was wondering "hey, is that Brent Cook guy still alive?", so I did a search and came across this interview from about a month ago:



So, Cookie Monster is still alive, and he gives a fairly decent interview about his thoughts on the gold scene to an interviewer who's actually competent.


Three more newsbits


Here:

Reformed Borker (Bork Bork Bork!) - corporate economists expect spending to increase. And thus the US economy is still going to improve.

Bonddad - the state of housing permits. Where he says "the best and most forward looking indicator, housing permits, has reversed course and trended upward in the last two months". And thus the US economy is still improving.

Calculated Risk - property tax collections above pre-recession peak. And thus the US economy is still improving.

Pass those three links on to your local doomer and ask him how the S&P is supposed to have reached a cyclical top.



Oh, so silver looks good, eh?


IKN - me think silver look good. He thinks the chart looks buyable. Well, let's see:


Oh geez. Below $18.50, SLV loses multi-year support. And volume is dwindling, so there's no interest even at this price.



Oh geez. If you're only looking at the weekly closes, it's already about to lose multi-year support. And dwindling volume explains the lower highs. And it even failed to retake its 50-week SMA.

Last time it failed support in this sort of low-volume, lower-highs environment? April 2013. Look at it. That's the potential downside. 30% or so. What's the potential upside for this trade?

Dude, let that knife stop falling before you pick it up.


Some morning news: they can't shut me up forever!


Had a bit of a kerfuffle with my computer this morning. It's cleared up now, but extra-suspiciously; so my latent paranoia means I'm now on the lookout for NSA involvement in my computer.

Because you damn well know that I'm going to be the first voice they want to silence when Obama brings in his New World Ordure.

Anyway, they haven't shut me down yet, so here's the news:


New Deal Demoncrat - last week's economic indicators. Summary:
In general, the long leading indicators again continued their 2014 trends. Treasury rates declined further below their December highs. Money supply continued its rebound, although there was a little softness for the week.  Bank lending rates remain low.  Only housing related data, in the form of negative real estate loans, which turned slightly negative, and mortgage applications, which improved this week, but continued poor, constitute a negative sector.

The short leading indicators were generally very positive this week.  Initial jobless claims had their best 4 week average since the recession.  Credit spreads made another new post-recession low. Temporary jobs tied for an all-time high.  Commodities were slightly positive.  Gas and oil remained slightly negative, as their seasonal increase is now enough to engage the oil choke collar.

The coincident reports were more mixed.  Consumer spending was positive.  Rail transport was also strongly positive. Shipping was mixed.  Tax withholding, however, turned negative, and steel remained negative.
This week was mixed, but with an emphasis on the positive.  There are a few trouble spots (steel, real estate loans, tax withholding), but the economy seems to be in good shape for now.
Translation: quit being a fucking pussy.


Ritholtz - what's gone up might not necessarily come down. He makes the case for not being a fucking pussy just because the US market went up last year.


New Deal Demoncrat - on creeping deflation and secular stagnation. the answer is simple:
one of the primary reasons for the slow growth is the rise of austerity policies in all three countries.  The standard macro-economic policy response to a recession is an increase in government spending.  Using the simple GDP equation: when C (consumer spending), I (Investment) and X (net exports) all decrease, G (government spending) makes up the difference.  During periods of economic slowdown, government spending has a higher mulitiple, meaning it has more of an impact; for every dollar spent more than an dollar of economic activity will result.  In fact, the IMF published a paper during the crisis which demonstrated the decreased government spending in periods of economic malaise was a direct cause of the slow growth seen throughout the developed world.
So thus the solution is simple.


New Deal Demoncrat - further to the previous. He points out the fundamental hypocrisy of Larry Summers:
The below quote, from Larry Summers describing his "secular stagnation" theme,  in particular leapt out at me:
 in such a situation falling wages and prices or inflation at slower-than-expected rates is likely to worsen economic performance by encouraging consumers and investors to delay spending, and to redistribute income and wealth from higher spending debtors to lower spending creditors.
In 2008-09, we could have bailed out debtors, or we could have bailed out creditors. Had we bailed out debtors, the debtors could have used that bailout money to renegotiate, pay down, or pay off their debts to the creditors, and then both would be made reasonably whole.  Bailing out creditors rescued them, but didn't cancel the debt, and so debtors still had to deleverage and pay off the debts, a painful and slow process.
At that critical juncture, none other than Larry Summers had the most powerful position possible to argue in favor of bailing out debtors, but did not do so.  We chose creditors, and we've been paying the price since.