May 13-19, 2023
FEAR NOT Brave Investors
Where have we been and where are we going? Join our weekly market thread on Traders Community…
The Week That Was – What Lies Ahead?
Click on the links below to navigate to the relevant section.
- Part A: Stock markets
- Part B: Bonds
- Fed and Banks
- Part C: Commodities
- Energy – Oil and Gas
- Gold and Silver
- Part D: Foreign Exchange
- Geopolitics and Economics
- Economy Week ahead
Equity markets appear to be in a state of flux, looking at the VIX, there appears to be no fear, however looking outside the financial market world despair and pain is plain to see. A reminder of that was the release of the preliminary University of Michigan Consumer Sentiment Survey for May showing a drop in sentiment and an increase in five-year ahead inflation expectations to 3.2% from 3.0%. That is the highest reading since 2011. The NY Fed’s Survey of Consumer Expectations for April also reflected a slight increase in three-year and five-year ahead inflation expectations.
How is the Consumer Hanging?
We get to look at where the consumer is this week further, US April retail sales are due Tuesday and should benefit from about a 7% m/m SA rise in new vehicle sales that on its own would add about 1% to m/m retail sales, plus a 3% m/m SA gain in gasoline prices that should add about another .25%. CPI components pointed toward gains in retail categories that are more goods than services. The US housing measures including starts (Wednesday) and resales (Thursday) are out. Initial jobless claims will be closely watched to see if last week’s increase is a new trend.
For a clearer look we get earnings reports from key retailers such as Walmart (WMT), Home Depot (:HD) and Target (TGT). Other retailers reporting include TJX Companies (TJX), Ross Stores (ROST), Burberry (BURBY), BJ’s Wholesale Club (BJ), Copart (CPRT) and Kohl’s Corporation (KSS).
The US relies on services for up to 90% of GDP. it relies on the consumer who is being battered by the California and New York regional bank debacle. The latest wreckage, PacWest fell another 21.0% this week after announcing that its deposits declined approximately 9.5% for the week ending May 5. PACW also cut its dividend to $0.01 per share from $0.25. The SPDR Regional Banking ETF (KRE) declined 5.2%. On top of that is cumbersome if not ignorant politicians, with no clear regard for main street pushing towards a debt ceiling.
“The United States is on track to add nearly $19 trillion to its national debt over the next decade, $3 trillion more than previously forecast, as a result of rising costs for interest payments, veterans’ health care, retiree benefits and the military, the Congressional Budget Office said”
We saw the debt ceiling reached on January 19, prompting the Treasury to begin employing extraordinary measures that should prevent a technical default until early June. The expectation this is all political showboating, but what if it more than that?
Treasury Secretary Yellen, who is more disconnected from main street by the hour, put an X date on the economy with the debt ceiling. At the same time the blame is constantly put on ‘the others’ with no solution. The bond and currency markets have reacted, with US CDS spiking on a chance there will not be a deal. (see chart below).
The 2-yr Treasury note yield rose seven basis points to 3.98% this week and the 10-yr note yield rose one basis point to 3.46%. The U.S. Dollar Index rose 1.4% to 102.71, the dollar short is crowded, so short covering could explain this week’s rise. However, lets look at China, a reminder of all the anti US pro BRICs chatter lately.
China’s renminbi (or Yuan) fell 0.71% this week to a near 2023 low versus the dollar. The Shanghai Composite dropped 1.9%. Number one property developer Country Garden’s bond yields surged almost nine percentage points to 49% Thursday, up from 26% to begin April to the highest level since last November. China’s recovery is fading epitomized by shocking credit data.
More negative signs were seen in iron ore prices dropping to a five-month low. Shanghai Steel Rebar futures prices dropped 3.3% this week, trading near the low since November. Most industrial commodities were under pressure this week. Copper dropped 4.0%, Nickel 7.4%, Tin 3.0%, Zinc 2.8%, and Aluminum 2.4%. Silver sank 6.6%. Recall the oil wipeout the last few week, though it did recover some but has lost momentum in that bounce. WTI fell $1.30 this week with y-t-d losses 13%. Natural gas for its bit bounced but remains it very low levels.
CPI Report Something for Everyone
April’s CPI report had something for everyone. While at 4.9%, y-o-y inflation was below 5% for the first time since May 2021, the apparent Powell favorite “supercore” inflation slowed to only 0.1% for the month. Yet the 0.4% monthly gain in both headline and core inflation indicates persistent inflationary pressures. April’s PPI came out the next day and was in much the same vibe. In other words, you can spin your own narrative.
This what is also controlling equity markets. The significant hedging around key economic data releases, such as CPI and non-farm payroll reports those writing option “insurance” are benefiting fear buyers. Who as we pointed out last week are largely in ODTE options and short cover after these releases once volatility stalls. The VIX traded down to 16.5 this week with liquidity abundance. Indicative of the extraordinary monetary backdrop, money market fund assets have risen an incredible $434 billion over the past nine weeks. At some point this falls apart, the question is will it be the call or put vol sellers forced to cover?
Back to the state of flux, Nasdaq Composite closed the week with a slim gain, the S&P 500 closed with a slim loss. Mega cap stocks again are benefitting from some flight to safety buying, held up the broader market. The Tesla chart we monitor gives an indication of that underbelly lagging behind Mega caps such as Apple. The Invesco S&P 500 Equal Weight ETF (RSP) fell 1.1% this week as the Vanguard Mega Cap Growth ETF (MGK) rose 0.8%. Alphabet (GOOG) rose 11.0% this week following its Developers Conference on Wednesday.
Where is the fear?
We got some movement this past week out of the tight range in markets but as we can see from the VIX chart it quickly reverted back after the initial breaks. We are aware of built-up energy ahead of key central bank decisions from this week and potential fundamentals to set-up rate hikes or not. There is discontent globally with central Banks.
Markets are largely pricing for no additional rate increases, though the rates market did end the week with a 13% probability of a 25-bps hike at the FOMC’s June 14th meeting. This prices a 5.10% implied rate. Markets ended the week pricing a 95-bps rate reduction by the January 31, 2024 meeting (over about seven months). From the Fed’s point of view Fed governor Michelle Bowman was out Friday: “The most recent inflation and employment reports have not provided consistent evidence that inflation is on a downward path… Should inflation remain high and labor market remain tight, additional monetary policy tightening will likely be appropriate…
A point well made over at Scotiabank last week which helps explain price action. There is a difference between marking down risk appetite within functioning markets—which is happening—versus widespread market dysfunction that can be destabilizing or lead to outright dysfunction—which is not happening to this point.
Talking about manic behavior it is not hard to argue the punter is overwhelming and influencing markets like no other time, well until the next time.
When the VIX is highly reactive, VIX related products can serve as potentially effective hedging tools, when the VIX is not very reactive, traditional hedging techniques may be a better choice.
The VOLX`s underlying instrument is the Mini VIX™ Future. The CBOE Volatility Index (VIX) is an up-to-the-minute market estimate of expected volatility. The VIX is calculated using a formula to derive expected volatility by averaging the weighted prices of out-of-the-money puts and calls (options) on the S&P 500.
Ahead is Debt Ceiling, Consumer Updates
Eyes will be on top macroeconomic reports that will emphasize the health of the US and global economies. Eyes and ears will be on central bankers given the market turmoil and the hiking of rates.
This week we get consumer updates in the US and Canada, UK and Australian jobs, evidence on momentum in China’s economy, New Zealand’s Budget, Turkey’s weekend election, plus Japanese inflation and GDP. This is all against the backdrop of rising market concern around the status of the US debt ceiling. We have the PBOC tail risk of easier Chinese monetary policy, Banxico’s expected pause, Canadian inflation.
How Hot is the American Economy?
More Macro and Micro data points, some highlights include:
- Monday: New York Fed Empire Manufacturing
- Tuesday: Retail sales, industrial production, business inventories
- Wednesday: Weekly MBA Mortgage, housing starts and weekly crude oil inventories
- Thursday: Weekly Initial and Continuing jobless claims, Conference Board leading index, existing home sales and weekly natural gas inventories.
- Friday: Fed Chair Powell and former chair Ben Bernanke to take part in a panel discussion at conference
US retail sales are due on Tuesday and could show a large pop higher. April’s reading should benefit from about a 7% m/m SA rise in new vehicle sales that on its own would add about 1% to m/m retail sales, plus a 3% m/m SA gain in gasoline prices that should add about another quarter point. CPI components pointed toward gains in retail categories that are more oriented toward goods than services. Key will be core sales excluding vehicles and gasoline.
The US will also update readings on industrial production (Tuesday), the Empire (Monday) and Philly Fed (Thursday) manufacturing gauges that will start to inform ISM expectations, plus a pair of housing gauges including starts (Wednesday) and resales (Thursday). Initial jobless claims will be closely monitored to see if the latest week’s increase has legs to it.
Swirling greed and know it all came home to roost. FOMO (fear of missing out) and TINA (there is no alternative) ended how they always do.
Earnings season continues with Walmart (WMT), Home Depot (HD), Target (TGT), Baidu (BIDU), Alibaba (BABA), Rumble (RUM), Applied Materials (AMAT), Cisco Systems (CSCO), Deere (DE), Canoo (GOEV), Bilibili (BILI), and Li-Cycle Holdings (LICY).
Click here to see the Full Week Ahead List Below
A reminder in these markets don’t get married to a view, leave biased partisan opinions at the door and find a leader. Right now, TSLA is giving us a good indicator of crowd behavior. Note the divergence and convergence with it and other instruments. Be proactive.
Worth repeating again in the low VIX environment.
Well, 2008 redux didn’t happen in the last few weeks, so the Fed moves have worked for now, much to Xi and Putin’s chagrin.
The doomsayers may be right, but we are seeing constant surprises to that theory. For example, early signs that the US housing market slump is finding a base are emerging, pending home sales having risen for a third month and to a 6-month high. we will keep an eye on consumer sentiment and business activity. We are far from being out of the woods, remember the market is not the economy. Saying that we got quite the distorted job picture per our main job stories which wee reprise below. Are we simply taking some air out or is the beginning of the great meltdown?
What we continue to notice is how this market is still being treated by ‘experts’ as those in the past, hence the volatility and extreme in bulls/bears. Understanding crowd behavior is essential in these markets. The moves have caught analysts and strategists by surprise with the uber bear running amok in the past few weeks. Typical thinking is this from Morgan Stanley strategists; “Given the events of the past few weeks, we think … equity markets are at greater risk of pricing in much lower estimates”, noting that earnings estimates were 15-20% too high even “before the recent banking events.”
What non-traders are failing to grasp is this market with so many variables is not trading as they expect and they are constantly wrong. S&P 500 earnings for the first quarter are estimated to have fallen 5% from 2022, followed by an expected 3.9% drop in the second quarter, Refinitiv data shows. During recessions, however, earnings tumble at a 24% annual rate on average, according to Ned Davis Research. However how important is that in such a chaotic market? There is the answer structure your thinking around game theory or even chaos theory.
So how Screwed are We?
- The banking system is on much greater Credit risk than mortgage risks were offloaded during the 2008 mortgage finance Bubble. At $25.6 TN, Banking System Assets ended 2022 almost double the 2007 level.
- Financial Sector debt growth jumped to a 9.66% rate last year, the strongest since 2007’s 13.50% Z.1 data showed. Now we are looking at this given the quick demise of regional banks and the concerns of the commercial structure. Why? we simple note a jump in Financial Sector borrowings signals a surge in risk intermediation. Is this fateful late-cycle intermediation gong to haunt the financial sector and economy when the Bubble bursts.
- If it doesn’t burst well, we circle back to the popular view that Financial Sector debt included in analysis would be “double counting” borrowings already included elsewhere (i.e. mortgage and business). The swift end to backs, the shocking management out there and geopolitical cold war out there has us ready to expect the unexpected and aware of moves to mitigate by Central banks as we saw a few weeks ago.
- GSE Assets expanded an unprecedented $2.094 TN, or 29.4%, over the past three years to a record $9.224 TN. FHLB Assets surged $524 billion, or 72%, in 2022, with indications for Q1 growth upwards of (yes) $400 billion.
- FHLB plays a pivotal role, last year prolonging the lending boom and last month stabilizing bank liquidity.
The Credit cycle downturn is coming to the surface.
We have the reflective destabilizing Monetary Disorder. Take a peek at China and the markets collective cognitive dissonance to the property market there, the shadow banking as just one example. Have a look around the world. The hope is the collective mass continues to evolve and survive, while each time the destruction is evident in massive disproportion shifts of wealth and attempts of mind, if not physical control of the masses. Dial that back and try and get in the minds of those trying to right the ship and the market components that matter, not what the dribblers think matter.
Here’s a thought, knowing about the power of cognitive dissonance does not necessarily protect you from its effects. Traders are only too aware of this eureka moment when you grasp it. Why some of the best trades you ever do, are the ones you don’t. In option parlance, being delta neutral sometimes is the best trade.
Key this coming week will be the commencement of the next round of such indicators that will test whether these gains were one-offs or something that is sustainable. The key will be the extent to which downside risks to the US economy have been reduced enough to influence global central banks, and how markets react.
Some things never change, when you think Greed is Good
Annualizing the New York Fed’s Q4 household borrowing data, Credit card debt expanded at a 26% pace and total debt at a 9.5% rate during the quarter. The Fed’s aggressive tightening cycle has had little affect on loose financial conditions.
Where to from here? It’s also okay to acknowledge and process any difficult emotions or experiences that you may have had during the past year. Looking back on the past year with perspective can help you to gain a greater understanding of what you have been through and how you have coped. I hope that you are able to find ways to manage any challenges that come your way and that you continue to feel fine moving forward. Embrace the chaos that is headed your way in 2023!
China; Behind the Iron Curtain
A big shift in 2022, China’s population is now falling and below that of India. China’s population fell for the first time since 1961 as births have steadily fallen in recent years despite the removal of the “one child policy”. The stalling working age population and its likely decline ahead means that potential growth in China is down from around 10% or so in the 2000s to around 4-5% now.
Growth in China’s metric of system Credit growth, Aggregate Financing, dropped to $175 billion, down significantly from March’s $773 billion and only 61% of estimates. It was also the weakest monthly growth since last October.
“China is warning domestic brokerages not to spread information that compromises national security, reinforcing a campaign that has roiled consulting firms and providers of financial data.”
- “The Chinese economy’s debt ratio reached a record high in the first quarter of the year, with bank loans to companies surging as the nation reopened from Covid Zero. The macro leverage ratio — or total debt as a percentage of gross domestic product — soared to 279.7% in the first quarter… That was an increase of 7.7 percentage points from the previous quarter, the biggest jump in three years. The debt ratio held by non-financial corporates rose 5.8 percentage points. Leverage ratios for the household and government sectors were each up by around 1 percentage point. The data doesn’t include bank loans to local government financing vehicles.” May 7 – Bloomberg
- “Across China, many local governments are on the brink of insolvency. Some cities have reduced pay for civil servants. Cuts to municipal health insurance have triggered street protests. Central government bailouts are a possibility to rescue cities from their deep budget problems, but China hasn’t turned to a source of revenue that would be an obvious option in other countries: property taxes. In China, where the government owns the land, localities almost never tax homeowners to support services like schools. Cities rely instead on selling long-term leases to real estate developers. Revenue from these land sales has plunged in the past year.” May 11 – New York Times (Keith Bradsher)
The Market Tripod of Destruction.
- Firstly, financial asset overvaluation has swung way past any sound underlying economic wealth structure.
- Secondly over-leverage in crowded bets.
- Thirdly we have greed enthused, as always in these cycles, risk engineering, transfer and management that ignores or understands bifurcation and contagion outcomes.
Leverage has become toxic, a development that if not addressed will have deep and with far-reaching sequels. It’s not too farfetched to suggest that the markets are on the verge of a rupture that would be difficult to contain. Should the crisis of confidence dynamics that hit Britain feed into other markets a powerful global contagion could be unleashed. The markets are dislocated, and financial stability is at risk. A sobering thought is the UK is just the initial first world pension system in this cycle facing the harsh reality of a steep devaluation of assets and the prospect of widespread insolvencies and debilitating negative sentiment.
- US Producer Price Inflation Moderates Again in April, +2.3% versus +2.7% in March
- Consumer Inflation in April Eases with Fed Screws Tightening, Core CPI Stays Elevated
- US Core PCE Inflation Held Steady at Persistently High Levels in March
- US Producer Price Inflation Fell Again in March, -0.5% m/m vs 0.0% Expected
- Consumer Inflation in March Eases, Higher Shelter Prices Offsetting Fall in Energy Costs
- FAO World Food Price Index Fell in March for Twelfth Consecutive Month
Inflation with Henry Kaufman
Kaufman is the legendary chief economist and head of bond market research at Salomon Brothers is someone who knows Inflation. Henry Kaufman in an interview with Bloomberg’s Erik Schatzker Jan 14, 2022:
“I don’t think this Federal Reserve and this leadership has the stamina to act decisively. They’ll act incrementally. In order to turn the market around to a more non-inflationary attitude, you have to shock the market. You can’t raise interest rates bit-by-bit.”
“The longer the Fed takes to tackle a high rate of inflation, the more inflationary psychology is embedded in the private sector — and the more it will have to shock the system.”
“‘It’s dangerous to use the word transitory,’ Kaufman said. ‘The minute you say transitory, it means you’re willing to tolerate some inflation.’ That, he said, undermines the Fed’s role of maintaining economic and financial stability to achieve ‘reasonable non-inflationary growth.’”
Independence – Never Take It for Granted Traders
“In aggregate, the market goes from order to disorder, and on that journey little pockets of order can form, including in commodities, bonds, stocks, currencies that circle back and reorder disorder. Then there is us the market player that reflects through order and disorder in an ever-evolving loop towards independence. It all starts with gravity and ends with equilibrium and back we go.” KnovaWave “The rules of market flux”
The Fed has kicked off its first real tightening campaign since 1994, with securities markets already at the brink of illiquidity and dislocation. Markets could soon be screaming for assurances of the Fed’s “buyer of last resort” liquidity backstop, while the Fed is prepared to begin withdrawing liquidity by selling Treasuries and MBS.
Another important aspect is the Fed doesn’t Control corporate pricing or wage decisions. Let us be clear geopolitical, climate change developments and what an out of depth, politically motivated administration are outside the Fed’s sphere of influence. There has been over $5.1 Trillion new “money” in 126 weeks, it’s a reasonable conclusion the Fed has lost control of Inflation.
We need to grasp all the risks to be wary off and received plenty of flak from it. We always talk here about expect the unexpected and now that is front and center, gage the market’s reaction, the market is always right and that’s why we focused on the crowd psychology aspect over the past few weeks.
“We have a market trying to interpret the Fed who is trying to find out how they can interpret their long-only portfolio at a risk parity where rates cannot rise.”– MoneyNeverSleeps
Cboe Daily Market Statistics
Our weekly reminder for risk. The downside is clear with the absence of moral hazard from repeated Federal Reserve market bailouts in an environment of some would say obscene liquidity pumps. Pure greed is the other part, not wanting to miss out on fees. The obvious question is, how deeply ingrained is this attitude through the markets? How do we ween the markets off this continuous dip feed? At this point the Central Banks have kicked that answer down the road.
Part A – Stock Markets
Weekly Highlights – USA
- S&P500 slipped 0.3% (up 7.4% y-t-d)
- Dow fell 1.1% (up 0.5%).
- S&P 400 Midcaps fell 1.2% (up 0.1%),
- Ssmall cap Russell 2000 declined 1.1% (down 1.2%).
- Nasdaq100 increased 0.6% (up 21.9%).
- Utilities dipped 0.4% (down 3.3%).
- Banks sank 3.5% (down 28.0%),
- Broker/Dealers declined 0.8% (down 4.2%).
- Transports lost 2.4% (up 2.9%).
- Semiconductors fell 1.2% (up 17.4%).
- Biotechs were unchanged (up 0.5%).
- With bullion slipping $6, the HUI gold equities index dropped 4.1% (up 16.2%).
Biggest SPX Stock Winners and Losers Last Week
Global Stock Market Highlights
Highlights – Europe Stocks
- U.K.’s FTSE equities index dipped 0.3% (up 4.1% y-t-d).
- France’s CAC40 slipped 0.2% (up 14.5%).
- German DAX equities index dipped 0.3% (up 14.3%).
- Spain’s IBEX 35 equities index gained 0.9% (up 12.2%).
- Italy’s FTSE MIB index was unchanged (up 15.4%).
Germany’s benchmark Blue Chip DAX 30 index (Deutscher Aktienindex) expanded to 40 companies on 20 September, 2021 adding 10 new members to the German stock index from the MDAX which will be reduced from 60 to 50 members.
Highlights – Asia Stocks
- Japan’s Nikkei Equities Index increased 0.8% (up 12.6% y-t-d).
- South Korea’s Kospi index fell 1.0% (up 10.7%).
- India’s Sensex equities index rallied 1.6% (up 2.0%).
- China’s Shanghai Exchange Index dropped 1.9% (up 5.9%).
Highlights – Australian Stocks
- Australia’s S&P/ASX 200: +0.1% 7256.7 Friday, (+0.5% for the week)
- Friday advancers saw News Corporation up 4.7% after earnings.
- Mining giants extended losses as iron ore prices fell on worries that China’s post-pandemic economic recovery was losing steam. BHP fell 1.2%, Rio Tinto slipped 1%, Fortescue fell 0.6%
Highlights – Emerging Markets Stocks
- Brazil’s Bovespa index recovered 3.2% (down 1.2%),
- Mexico’s Bolsa index was little changed (up 13.4%)
- Turkey’s Borsa Istanbul National 100 index rallied 9.0% (down 13.0%).
- Russia’s MICEX equities index gained 1.1% (up 19.1%).
Daily: The daily SPX on Friday closed out the year right in the sphere of interest at the cloud twist. The market after spitting the 4100 and 38.2% retracement broke through all near support., though managing to capture the Tenkan on the last day of the year. This underscores the power from the SPX spat of June & October lows with impulse through the tenkan and Kijun energized by the daily cloud twist that fueled this rally. The completive wave came off extreme fear and bear that ended with relief. Now we have sated much of the greed phase and short fear phase. We have completed that cycle and from here we measure the alternatives.
Tracing back from highs the fuel from the top of the channel after completing 3 waves off ATH, accelerated after broke the Tenkan through to the 4600 OI where it reversed with impulse back to Tenkan. Bulls, this is likely a (ii) of a 5. Bears this is 1-2 of (i) completive V of degree. We watch if this low was a (iii), (a) or C. We have to respect the number of alternatives of degree of 5. With such trends keep it simple resistance is Tenkan and Kijun and watch for ABC. From no fear to panic is the driving element.
On the downside the Kijun and those June lows now critical and is our trading Bear/Bull pivot in a high vol scenario. Watch each measured 3 wave move on the 240 & Murrey Math highlighted in the podcast. The prices pulled through the downward cloud pulled by the twist ‘helium contusion’ on the completive.
For fractal purposes, SPX completed 5 waves up where it reversed with impulse. Energy fueled from the power impulse down from +1/8 ATH spit of a spit fail. On the way down (just like up) it accelerated after it broke the Tenkan through the rejected Kijun and then through the median after tapping 8/8.
Weekly: In the last week of 2022 we again closed under the Tenkan and 8/8 after the failed rally was rejected at the 50wma and +1/8. Key support is the 38% correction and the previous low. Power came from rejecting the cloud as one would expect in a 3 or C. We have Kijun. the Tenkan and 50wma all above i.e impulse right to the weekly cloud is needed for cycle switching. For that you would have to break the Kijun and 50wma.
We are playing out S&P 500 energy after it held the sphere of influence from Nov 2020 reversed higher after spitting the 38% and key lows. At the time we opined “We do have a weekly cloud twist; however, the energy is waning without sharp impulse.” We got the sharp impulse right to weekly Kijun. For major cycles we watch the S&P 500 over 4,231, the 50% retracement of losses from the Jan. 3 & June 16 close. Since 1950 there has never been a bear market rally that exceeded the 50% retracement then gone on to make new cycle lows. Is this time different, as we tested and spat those June lows?
On the way up each new high evolved after testing Tenkan key support on the way and we are now getting a retest as resistance. We reiterate this needs to be recovered for a resumption of the uptrend meanwhile the bear market plays out. Watch Tenkan this week and watch for Kijun reaction. Extensions are difficult to time, keep it simple.
THE KEY: Key for the impulse higher was the spit or retest of MM 8/8 and Tenkan San, which held with the previous highs and Tenkan. To repeat “We look for 3 waves down and reactions to keep it simple with the alternatives in the daily.” Keep an eye on the put/call ratio with recognition to the sheer size of contracts AND keep in mind the stimulus distortion. The spit per channel fractal and Adams rule launched back over the cloud where we were encased AND we are back testing it. Watch if a spit or clear break support as Chikou rebalances
A reminder that Apple Inc $AAPL, Microsoft Corp $MSFT, Amazon.com Inc $AMZN, Facebook Inc $FB, and Google-parent Alphabet Inc $GOOGL make up approximately 23% of the total weight of the S&P 500. With that comes gyrations that are an outsized impact on broader markets
The down move saw Nasdaq spit the weekly Kijun and a 1-2 off tenkan we spat MM 5/8 after holding the key 61.8% Fib. We watch the Tenkan & Kijun confluence above, the breakup level and between the 38/50 Fibs. The Nasdaq is well behind the S&P pace with the weekly cloud and 50wma well above. Support the 61.8% retest.
Recall ATH was after it broke and held the weekly Tenkan to see a spit of a spit fail which is completive of 5 of some degree with Chikou rebalancing. Watch Chikou for divergence for continuation or failure. Divergence with Russell also a clue.
The Dow led the indices and closed above the weekly Tenkan after closing and testing last week. Prior test after the reaction off the June lows and sphere of influence. Support is the channel and Fibs. Tenkan and Kijun after the reaction empowered. Support is the channel and Fibs.
The small cap Russell RUT bounced in double bottom off 1600 5/8 confluence which was the Nov 2020 breakup. Russell 2000 Resistance Tenkan and Kijun, note previous rejections. This is the index showing more of the fast money crowd and is trading like it. Needs to get traction in here for bulls. 7/8 & 8/8 support collapsed on the way down and is now major resistance.
NVidia surged 90% in Q! 2023. The Philadelphia Semiconductor (SOX) Index returned 27.6% for the quarter, with the Nasdaq Computer Index up 25.7% and the NYSE Arca Technology Index gaining 26.1%. The Nasdaq100 (NDX) jumped 20.5%. NVDA took off after the breakup retest from May 2021. NVidia is a clear leader of SOX & SMH look for cues there and ABC failures for changes. NVDA never looked back after the Key Break (mauve) and Tenkan to a flat cloud and holding support the recent low at the 61.8% extension.
Heading into another Earnings Apple held the sphere of influence after retesting 7/8 & break up. Kijun and Tenkan are about to touch, with earnings we watch for a kiss of death at the cloud as the story. Apple & other mega-cap names dominant the major indices, and a plethora of funds that hold it as a core position. The Vanguard Mega-Cap Growth ETF (MGK) delta is important to watch.
A firm rejection at $175 at +2/8 triggered a waterfall down for Apple. On the way up Apple gently motored up to new ATH over the massive $160 then $170 thru to $180 gamma level on the way down these levels became key energy levels all the way to $132. Support held at the May break (just like NVDA) where from there it spat the cloud pulled by a flat Tenkan and Kijun as it rebalanced Chikou. The old channel break and MM 8/8 is now key. Remember the impact $AAPL has, at least short term on all the major indices.
The ARK Innovation ETF (ARKK) finally found some support at -1/8, 78% off highs and the 423.6% extension! The ARK Innovation ETF returned 29% for Q1 2023. The fund is filled with growth stocks and was the top-performing U.S. equity fund tracked by Morningstar in 2020, it has not been a pretty slide. For the quarter, Nasdaq Computer Index up 25.7% and the NYSE Arca Technology Index gaining 26.1%. The Nasdaq100 (NDX) jumped 20.5%.
The ARKK ETF trading clinically, tested triangle breakdown and failed off 50 WMA. Some work at support at 61.8% of whole move and then wrecked again. Clear crowd behavior, we saw ATH in NASDAQ & SPX, yet this couldn’t raise a bid – very telling negative divergence. $ARKK rebalanced Chikou at week’s end
Part B: Bond Markets
Bond markets have moved with chaotic trepidation. The three-month/two-year Treasury yield spread inverted a further 25 bps this week to negative 132 bps (most inverted in four decades). Bond traders have the overhang that the U.S. Treasury market since 2008 has been conditioned to discount the possibility of aggressive rate cuts and QE-related Treasury/MBS purchases. Not a healthy scene, given the more manic markets get with bank lending excess the greater the probability of another bout of aggressive monetary stimulus. Meanwhile, The Fed raised rates on Wednesday in the face of an unfolding banking crisis. The ECB, Norges Bank, HKMA and Bank Negara all followed suite.
Treasury Yield Watch
- 2-yr: +8 bps to 3.98% (+7 bps for the week)
- 3-yr: +12 bps to 3.67% (+2 bps for the week)
- 5-yr: +9 bps to 3.45% (+3 bps for the week)
- 10-yr: +7 bps to 3.46% (+1 bp for the week)
- 30-yr: +3 bps to 3.78% (+2 bps for the week)
For our complete Weekly Fixed Interest Analysis and Outlook visit our Bond Traders Weekly Outlook:
- Freddie Mac 30-year fixed mortgage rates declined six bps to 6.43% (up 113bps y-o-y).
- Fifteen-year rates dropped 10 bps to 5.75% (up 127bps).
- Five-year hybrid ARM rates sank 23 bps to 5.73% (up 175bps).
- Bankrate’s survey of jumbo mortgage borrowing costs had 30-year fixed rates down a basis point to 6.87% (up 132bps).
Part C: Commodities
- The Bloomberg Commodities Index fell 1.7% (down 10.3% y-t-d).
- Spot Gold declined 0.3% to $2,011 (up 10.2%).
- Silver dropped 6.6% to $23.97 (up 0.1%).
- WTI crude lost $1.30, or 1.8%, to $70.04 (down 13%).
- Gasoline rallied 2.0% (down 1%)
- Natural Gas recovered 6.0% to $2.27 (down 49%).
- Copper dropped 4.0% (down 2.2%).
- Wheat slumped 3.8% (down 20%),
- Corn fell 1.7% (down 14%).
- Bitcoin sank $2,830, or 9.6%, this week to $26,760 (up 61%).
Key Long Term Commodity Charts
Gold futures for June gold on Friday closed down off last week’s surge to $2,072.19 on Thursday, just shy of its record high of $2,072.49, following the Fed’s hint that its hiking cycle may be ending.
China raised its gold holdings by about 8.09 tons in April, according to data from the State Administration of Foreign Exchange. Total stockpiles now sit at about 2,076 tons, after China increased reserves by about 120 tons in the five months through March.
For complete Oil and Natural Gas Coverage please visit our dedicated publications ‘Around the Barrel’ and ‘Into the Vortex.’ – Weekly Analysis and Outlook for Energy Traders and Investors
BDI Freight Index
For our complete Weekly Commodity Analysis and Outlook visit our Commodity Traders Weekly Outlook:
Charts and commentary via KnovaWave on:
- Grains: Wheat, Corn, Soybeans
- Metals: Copper, Aluminum
- Precious Metals: Gold Silver
- Oil and Natural gas are covered separately (see below)
Part D: Forex Markets
John Maynard Keynes, 1920: “There is no subtler, no surer means of overturning the existing basis of society than to debauch the currency. The process engages all the hidden forces of economic law on the side of destruction and does it in a manner which not one man in a million is able to diagnose.”
- For the week, the U.S. Dollar Index gained 1.4% to 102.68 (down 0.8% y-t-d) 2022 gains were 8.2%
- For the week on the upside, the Mexican peso increased 1.0%, and the Brazilian real gained 0.6%.
- On the downside, the South African rand declined 4.8%, the Swedish krona 2.1%, the New Zealand dollar 1.6%, the euro 1.5%, the Australian dollar 1.5%, the British pound 1.4%, the Canadian dollar 1.3%, the Norwegian krone 1.1%, the Singapore dollar 0.9%, the South Korean won 0.9%, the Swiss franc 0.7%, and the Japanese yen 0.7%. The Chinese (onshore) renminbi declined 0.71% versus the dollar (down 0.87%).
For our complete Forex Weekly Analysis and Outlook visit our Forex Traders Weekly Outlook:
Charts and commentary via KnovaWave on the US Dollar, Euro, Japanese Yen, British Pound, Euro Pound, Swiss Franc, Canadian Dollar, Australian Dollar, New Zealand Dollar, Turkish Lira, Mexican Peso. Currency dynamics are complex. There are myriad facets to analyze and contemplate that influence all markets.
Bitcoin continues to be plaything of levered speculators, this week we saw the markets turn against those short. An incredibly intense squeeze engulfed the Treasury market which flowed through to crypto. Intense squeeze dynamics also spurred a huge rally in crypto, with bitcoin surging a crazy 34%.
Where did this come from? Forced coverage from yield curve punts blowing up. Yen shorts and levered “carry trades” were at risk. JGB and European yields sank. Corporate spreads were blowing out, inflicting losses on levered corporate bond portfolios. Energy prices tanked. The favored (so called safe) financial stocks were collapsing, while the heavily shorted technology stocks rallied. For the week, the KBW Bank Index sank 14.6%, while the Nasdaq100 (NDX) jumped 5.8%.
It had been a churn following the FTX collapse. BTC had been stuck in the sphere of influence in continuation awaiting a catalyst, and it came. Continues to perform technically to perfection. Impulse begets impulse. To understand panic, understand greed. $BTC tested the top of a rising channel after the preceding sharp downturn which was the downside breakout of an earlier bearish flag, after breaking downside a H&S top and then down it went….
Recall Bitcoin exploded higher following it’s correction impulsively upon completing 5 waves up at +2/8. Each Tenkan and Kijun tap saw an explosive kiss of death until we completed 3 waves to around 28,000. From there we have seen extreme volatility.
Looking back Bitcoin put in a high of $63,000 around Coinbase, the largest US crypto exchange successfully went public which signaled profit-taking. The high over $68,000 came after the launch over the Bitcoin ETF. From that high we have 2 main alternatives a V of a 1 of a V. For bears it a completive five with impulse right to the 50wma – an incredible 26% fall in a Friday night session. That’s impulse!
On the Risk Radar
Fed Warnings on Possible Medium To Long Term Risks
Geopolitical Tinderbox Radar
Economic and Geopolitical Watch
Major US Banks Deliver Mixed Results in Q1, 2023
America’s big money center banks kick of first quarter earnings next week. There will be extra attention on them with the recent banking turmoil. Guidance will be keenly watched for from the money center banks. Concerns are rising over the banking sector’s exposure to commercial real estate. JPMorgan Chase (JPM), Citigroup (C), PNC Financial Services Group, Inc. (PNC) and Wells Fargo (WFC) reporting Q1 results on Friday. We got a preview from JPMorgan CEO Dimon saying that banking system is strong and sound despite the banking crisis raising the odds of a recession, and that the crisis is not over yet.
Major banks kicking off earnings this quarter, including BlackRock (BLK), Citigroup (C), First Republic Bank (FRC), JPMorgan Chase (JPM) and Wells Fargo (WFC).
- Morgan Stanley Wealth Management Revenue Rose 11% While Investment Banking Revenue Fell 24%
- Goldman Sachs Revenues Miss, Discloses Losses in Marcus and Real Estate
- Bank of America Earnings Benefiting from Higher Interest Rates and Solid Loan Growth
- Wells Fargo Earnings Higher with Net Interest Income Up 45% on Higher Rates
- PNC Bank Earnings Beat Expectations but Lowered 2023 Revenue Guidance
- What Banking Crisis? JPMorgan Shrugs, Record Lending Income and Revenue
- Citigroup Personal Banking Revenue and Indian Exit Boost Earnings
The California and New York Regional Bank Collapse of 2023
So that went quick….. its all about the crisis that just kept holding off until it didn’t
Just when you thought it was safe:
Jay Powell’s FOMC Speech: “We are committed to learning the right lessons from this episode and will work to prevent events like these from happening again.”
“JPMorgan… agreed to acquire First Republic Bank in a government-led deal for the failed lender, putting to rest one of the biggest troubled banks remaining after turmoil engulfed the industry in March… ‘This is getting near the end of it, and hopefully this helps stabilize everything,’ JPMorgan Chief Executive Officer Jamie Dimon said on a call with journalists Monday. Regional banks that reported first-quarter results in recent weeks ‘actually had some pretty good results,’ the CEO said. ‘The American banking system is extraordinarily sound.’” May 1 – Bloomberg (Jenny Surane, Hannah Levitt and Katanga Johnson)
“The trio of bank failures since March has cast a pall over KPMG’s lucrative business as the largest auditor of the US banking sector. Questions over the quality of its work and independence have mounted in recent days, following the release of a Federal Reserve report into the collapse of Silicon Valley Bank and the forced sale of First Republic. The Big Four accounting firm was auditor to both banks, as well as to Signature… In all three cases, KPMG gave the banks’ financial statements a clean bill of health as recently as the end of February. ‘It’s a three-fer,’ said Francine McKenna, a former KPMG consultant who now lectures at the Wharton School… ‘It’s a dubious achievement . . . and we need tough action to back up tough talk from regulators.’” May 3 – Financial Times (Stephen Foley):
“The American Bankers Association on Thursday urged federal regulators to investigate a spate of significant short sales of publicly traded banking equities that it said were ‘disconnected from the underlying financial realities.’ In a letter to U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission Chair Gary Gensler, the lobby group said it had also observed ‘extensive social media engagement’ about the health of various banks that was out of step with general industry conditions.” May 4 – Reuters (Andrea Shalal)
Round One and Two
“The Federal Reserve on Sunday unveiled a new program to ensure banks can meet the needs of all their depositors amid escalating chances of bank runs following the abrupt collapse of two major banks in the space of 72 hours. The Bank Term Funding Program (BTFP) will offer loans with maturities of up to a year to banks, savings associations, credit unions and other eligible depository institutions. Here are some key elements of the Fed’s program: A key element of the program is acceptable loan collateral – including U.S. Treasuries and mortgage-backed securities among others – will be valued at ‘par’… Loans of up to a year in length will be available under the new facility… Interest rates will be the one-year overnight index swap (OIS) rate plus 10 bps and will be fixed for the term of the advance on the day the advance is made… The loan commitments made by the Fed’s 12 regional banks will be backstopped with $25 billion from the U.S. Treasury’s Exchange Stabilization Fund.”March 13 – Reuters (Dan Burns)
“Just hours after Wall Street opened for trading on Friday morning, US regulators had seized control of Silicon Valley Bank, which had imploded under the strain of depositors pulling out their money en masse. What at first seemed like the failure of a one-of-its-kind lender with deep ties to the technology industry quickly appeared as though it might spiral out of control. Within 48 hours, regulators were preparing a package of emergency measures to quell panic among depositors and prevent contagion in the rest of the banking system. For some working on the effort, it evoked memories of the response to the coronavirus pandemic in 2020 and the great financial crisis of 2008. By Sunday evening, the US government announced it would guarantee all deposits held at SVB and crypto lender Signature Bank, which was also shut down by regulators at the weekend. The Federal Reserve, meanwhile, launched a lending facility that would be available to lots of other banks in order to ensure depositors’ demands could be met.”March 13 – Financial Times (Colby Smith, James Politi, Ortenca Aliaj and James Fontanella-Khan)
“The biggest banks in the U.S. swooped in to rescue First Republic Bank with a flood of cash totaling $30 billion, in an effort to stop a spreading panic following a pair of recent bank failures. JPMorgan…, Citigroup Inc., Bank of America Corp. and Wells Fargo are each making a $5 billion uninsured deposit into First Republic, the banks said… Morgan Stanley and Goldman Sachs… are kicking in $2.5 billion apiece, while five other banks are contributing $1 billion each. The bank’s executives came together in recent days to formulate the plan, discussing it with Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen and other officials and regulators in Washington, D.C…”March 16 – Wall Street Journal (David Benoit, Dana Cimilluca, Ben Eisen, Rachel Louise Ensign and AnnaMaria Andriotis):
“Credit Suisse shares rebounded sharply on Thursday after the lender revealed plans to borrow up to SFr50bn ($54bn) from the Swiss central bank and buy back about SFr3bn of its debt in an attempt to boost liquidity and calm investors. The Swiss National Bank had said on Wednesday it was willing to provide a liquidity backstop following a plunge of as much as 30% in the troubled lender’s stock… In a statement on Thursday, Credit Suisse said it had taken the decision ‘to pre-emptively strengthen its liquidity’ by borrowing the funds from the Swiss central bank under a loan facility and short-term liquidity facility.”March 16 – Financial Times (Joshua Frankli, Owen Walker and Laura Noonan)
The Week Ahead – Have a Trading Plan
What Macro and Micro Risks and Opportunities Lie Ahead this week
Next Week’s Risk Dashboard via Scotiabank
- Markets are getting more nervous about the debt ceiling
- The Fed’s neutral rate
- Canadian inflation is likely to remain stick
- Banxico expected to pause
- PBoC on cut watch
- BSP may hold
- UK job markets driving wage pressures
- Australian wage growth expected to increase
- A prudent NZ budget?
- Japanese inflation to rise again
- US, CDN consumer updates
- BoC’s financial stability assessment
- Out with Erdogan?
- Other global macro
Central Bank Watch
In our central bank watch in the week ahead a lot to take in. All eyes on the Bank of England and ECB and Fed officials’ speeches. Poland also meets on rates. We also have two Latam central bank’s policy meeting, Peru and Chile this coming week.
Eyes and ears will be on central bankers. We have the backdrop of a more hawkish Fed Chair in the face of escalating systemic risk. How will this affect Fed policy given the massive treasury positions out there and the risk of uninsured funds? In this environment we get pivots daily. How much damage is the Federal Reserve willing to do in the guise of controlling inflation?
This Week’s Interest Rate Announcements (Time E.T.)
Sunday, May 14, 2023
- 21:20 PBoC’s 1-year Medium-Term Lending Facility Rate
Thursday, May 18, 2023
- 03:00 Philippines Interest Rate Decision
- 15:00 Mexico Interest Rate Decision
For our complete Central Bank Analysis and Outlook visit our Central bank Watch:
Economic Data Watch
US Data Focus
- Monday: May Empire State Manufacturing survey (prior 10.8) at 8:30 ET and March Net Long-Term TIC Flows (prior $71.0 bln) at 16:00 ET
- Tuesday: April Retail Sales (prior -1.0%) and Retail Sales ex-auto (prior -0.8%) at 8:30 ET; April Industrial Production (prior 0.4%) and Capacity Utilization (prior 79.8%) at 9:15 ET; March Business Inventories (prior 0.2%) and May NAHB Housing Market Index (prior 45) at 10:00 ET
- Wednesday: Weekly MBA Mortgage Index (prior 6.3%) at 7:00 ET; April Housing Starts (prior 1.420 mln) and Building Permits (prior 1.413 mln) at 8:30 ET; weekly crude oil inventories (prior +2.95 mln) at 10:30 ET; and $15 bln 20-yr Treasury bond auction results at 13:00 ET
- Thursday: Weekly Initial Claims (prior 264,000), Continuing Claims (prior 1.813 mln), and May Philadelphia Fed Survey (prior -31.3) at 8:30 ET; April Existing Home Sales (prior 4.44 mln) and April Leading Indicators (prior -1.2%) at 10:00 ET; and weekly natural gas inventories (prior +78 bcf) at 10:30 ET
- Friday: Nothing of note
Global Data Focus
- Canada: Existing home sales, housing starts, BOC issues financial system survey, CPI
- Mexico: Mexico international reserves, Mexico rate decision
- Europe: HICP, Flash GDP ECB speak, most notably President Lagarde on Tuesday and Friday.
- Russia: GDP, Central bank Governor Elvira Nabiullina
- Turkey: Election, President Erdogan v Kilicdaroglu, Voting on Sunday opens at 8 am local time and polls close at 5 pm.
- UK: Unemployment BoE policymakers including Governor Bailey
- China: PBoC one-year medium-term lending facility (MLF) rate. Industrial production, retail sales, unemployment rate and year-to-date fixed asset investments for April. House Price Index. Earnings from China’s Big Tech; Baidu (BIDU) on Tuesday, 16 May, Tencent Holdings (TCEHY) on Wednesday, 17 May, and Alibaba Group (BABA) on Thursday, 18 May.
- Japan: Producer prices, balance of trade for April, consumer inflation rate for April
- India: Balance of trade deficit for April, Wholesale inflation in April
- South Korea: South Korea unemployment figures
- Australia: Westpac consumer confidence data for May, meeting minutes of the recent RBA monetary policy decision. Employment
- New Zealand: April’s balance of trade
US Stocks Watch Earnings and Event Watch
Earnings Highlights This Week:
- Monday includes Rumble (RUM) Catalent (CTLT), Monday.com (MNDY), Tower Semiconductor (TSEM), Workhorse Group (WKHS), SFL Corporation (SFL), Sundial (SNDL), Canoo (GOEV), Li-Cycle (LICY), Terran Orbital (LLAP), and Workhorse Group (WKHS).
- Tuesday includes Home Depot (HD) Baidu (BIDU), Sea Limited (SE), ON Holding (ONON), Tencent Music (TME), HUYA (HUYA), Stratasys (SSYS) Kyndryl (KD), Doximity (DOCS), Paysafe (PSFE), Lightspeed commerce (LSPD) and Keysight Technologies (KEYS).
- Wednesday includes Cisco Systems (CSCO) Target (TGT) Trip.com (TCOM), Take-Two Interactive (TTWO), TJX Companies (TJX), Jack in the Box (JACK), Bowlero (BOWL), Synopsys (SNPS), Boot Barn Holdings (BOOT), Wix.com (WIX), StoneCo (STNE), Dynatrace (DT) Viasat (VSAT) and Progressive Corporation (PGR).
- Thursday includes Walmart (WMT) Alibaba (BABA) Applied Materials (AMAT), Ross Stores (ROST), Burberry (OTCPK:BURBY), BJ’s Wholesale Club (BJ), Copart (CPRT), Kohl’s Corporation (KSS), Dole (DOLE), Bilibili (BILI), Bath & Body Works (BBWI), Canada Goose (GOOS) and Farfetch (FTCH).
- Friday includes Deere & Co (DE) Foot Locker (FL) and RBC Bearings (RBC).
Investors (and algos) will focus on the conference calls and outlooks. Last quarter everyone expected the worse, we saw critical updates on production in coronavirus impacted regions and if there is extended halting of operations weighing on multi-nationals.
Notable conferences running during the week include:
G7 Finance minister and central bank governors meet in Japan on Thursday.
- 13F filings from hedge funds are due to be filed by the end of the day.
- Roblox (RBLX) monthly metrics.
- Robinhood Markets (HOOD) could also release operating data for April, including assets under custody and trading volume.
- OpenAI CEO Sam Altman will participate in a bipartisan discussion at the U.S. Capitol on the topic of AI and the future.
- The four-day American Society of Gene + Cell Therapy meeting. Analysts have the Cystinosis program update from AVROBIO (AVRO).
- International Energy Agency will publish its monthly Oil Market Report.
- Dave & Buster’s Entertainment (PLAY) virtual Investor Day event.
- Lucid Diagnostics (LUCD), a majority-owned subsidiary of PAVmed Inc. (PAVM), will host a business update conference call.
- Carpenter Technology Corporation (CRS) Investor Day event
- On Semiconductor (ON) financial analyst meeting.
- U.S. video game market sales results for April are due to be released by NPD Group.
- Expiration date hits for WTI crude oil options.
- BMO Capital Markets Global Farm to Market Conference, including Tyson Foods (TSN), Kroger (KR), and Archer Daniels Midland (ADM).
- Executives with Silicon Valley Bank and Signature Bank will testify in front of the House Financial Services Committee.
- Blackberry (BB) Analyst Day event.
- The AI & Big Data Expo will feature a focus on Enterprise AI, Machine Learning, Security, Ethical AI, and Deep Learning. Consumer companies such as Ford (F), Johnson & Johnson (JNJ), PepsiCo (PEP), and Visa (V) will all be talking AI at the expo.
- Maravai LifeSciences (MRVI) annual meeting
- Shareholders with INDUS Realty Trust (INDT) will vote on the takeover deal by Centerbridge Partners and GIC Real Estate. INDT trades slightly below the deal price of $67.00 per share.
- Hive Blockchain CEO Frank Holmes will speak at the Bitcoin 2023 Conference on the state of mining.
- eHealth (EHTH) Investor & Analyst Day in New York City.
- Illinois Tool Works (ITW) will hold an in-person investor conference
- Symbotic (SYM) Investor Day
- Chegg (CHGG) will present at the Needham Technology & Media Conference. Investors will be looking for update on negative impact on the company from ChatGPT and timeline for Chegg’s own AI initiatives.
- Federal Reserve Chairman Jerome Powell and former chair Ben Bernanke will speak in Washington on monetary policy.
- MicroStrategy (MSTR) CEO Michael Saylor will give a talk at the Bitcoin 2023 Conference on the topic of thermodynamic savings.
Sovereign Rating Updates
- Ireland (S&P)
- South Africa (S&P)
- Italy (Moody’s)
- Portugal (Moody’s)
- Denmark (DBRS)
US IPO Week Ahead:
Focus on yourself and what YOU CAN INFLUENCE, set your trading plan and goals in be set for 2022.
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