COVID Box Scores First
The data early this morning @ 3:30 AM was looking pretty good. But, just in the past hour the new data has come in and it shows a persistent increase in the numbers of cases (and deaths) being reported.
No worries by the markets, though. With the Fed in for a trillion worth of “play money” the market is obliging by rising more than a thousand in the early going today.
Import and Export Prices
Another factor – which will be dialed in to the forward-thinking of markets today will be trends in import and export prices just released:
“U.S. import prices declined 0.5 percent in February, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today, after ticking up 0.1 percent in January. In February, falling import fuel prices more than offset higher prices for nonfuel imports. Prices for U.S. exports decreased 1.1 percent in February, after advancing 0.6 percent the previous month.
Imports: Import prices declined 0.5 percent in February, after rising 0.1 percent in January and 0.2 percent in December. The decline in February was the largest decrease since the index fell 0.6 percent in August. Prices for U.S. imports decreased 1.2 percent from February 2019 to February 2020, as declining prices for both nonfuel and fuel imports contributed to the movement. (See table 1.)
Fuel Imports: Import fuel prices decreased 7.7 percent in February, the largest monthly decline since the index dropped 7.8 percent in June 2019. The February decrease was led by lower prices for petroleum, though falling prices for natural gas also contributed to the monthly decline. Petroleum prices fell 7.6 percent in February following no change in January and a 0.5-percent advance in December. The price index for natural gas declined 12.4 percent in February, after decreasing 13.2 percent in January. Import fuel prices fell 5.8 percent over the past 12 months, driven by a 5.5-percent drop in petroleum prices and a 13.9-percent decline in natural gas prices.
Over here, though, we see signs the Globalism Model is failing:
Exports: U.S. export prices decreased 1.1 percent in February, the largest monthly decline since the index fell 1.1 percent in December 2015. In February, falling prices for both agricultural and nonagricultural exports contributed to the overall decrease. Prices for exports declined 1.3 percent on a 12-month basis in February, after rising 0.4 percent from January 2019 to January 2020.
That said, we are still timid, cowardly, and drooling at times as we go off-line thinking about whether to hold ANY position – long or short – over the weekend.
COVID, China, and WW III
I don’t usually “CC the world” on personal, in-the-family emails, but I sent one to my son this morning and here’s part of which it said:
“The short version (supported by lots of research) is that the US and China are likely to have a global war sometime before 2027. There is a broad “bump” *(wide spread of data) suggesting a very long-term view of events that might calendar out something like this:
- 2020-2022: Onset of Second U.S. Depression
- 2021-2026: The ultimate Global Arms race
- 2026/2027: China invades (and takes) Taiwan similar to how Germany took the Sudetenland in 1939 under the cry of “Lebensraum” (living or elbow room). This is summarized (Wiki) as:
“The Sudeten crisis of 1938 was provoked by the Pan-Germanist demands of Germany that the Sudetenland be annexed to Germany, which happened after the later Munich Agreement. Part of the borderland was invaded and annexed by Poland. Afterwards, the formerly unrecognized Sudetenland became an administrative division of Germany. When Czechoslovakia was reconstituted after the Second World War, the Sudeten Germans were expelled and the region today is inhabited almost exclusively by Czech speakers.”
OK, so far, not a problem for (my son’s fire department) right?
Except that we know what happened NEXT: Germany went to war with the world. And unfortunately, there are economic as well as social reasons for that to play out vis. China in the next decade.
Go ahead, ask: What’s THIS have to do with COVID?
Pay VERY VERY close attention to the stories linking the U.S. to being the source of COVID and its release in CHINA:
“China government spokesman says U.S. military may have brought virus to China”
Here’s how this story begins (but notice how it implies [strongly] that China KNOWS the source of this bioweapon gone-wild is the U.S.
“A spokesman for China’s Foreign Ministry suggested on Thursday the U.S. military might have brought the coronavirus to the Chinese city of Wuhan, which has been hardest hit by the outbreak, doubling down on a war of words with Washington. China has taken great offence at comments by U.S. officials …”..
The U.S. MainStream/Corporate media is continuing to downplay this (despite the fact that the Virus footprint does in some online accounts trace back to UNC and up to the Canadian biolab in Saskatchewan… The “downplaying” is evidenced by use of terms like “Conspiracy Theory” in order to hide reality from unaware American social media sheep:
This article continues on:
““It might be US army who brought the epidemic to Wuhan,” Zhao Lijian, a foreign ministry spokesman, said in a tweet. “Be transparent! Make public your data! US owe us an explanation!”
Significantly, the official says his view reflects that of the government of China – and to us, this is about as close to warning shots being fired over the bow as you’ll see from the shore side of the “bounding main…”
Thus, we are left to wonder – if this much is being said by the public-facing sides of government, how utterly more serious things are on the non-public facing side? Flash goggles and suntan lotion for all hands, please. Like toilet paper, we try to give you long lead-times.
As I Told You Last Year
Do you remember how much (sh*t) got heaped on me last year when I wrote:
“Along with the futures being up for the markets (Santa Rally may continue!) we also notice that Bitcoins were still holding by a thread above $7,000. Peoplenomics readers already know our outlook is for BTCs to sink under $4,000 next year. Grinch that I am.“
Well, after the shrill of the shills we notice that BTC was down to $5,620 this morning. Bathing in O-negative today, are we? And it gives me a chance to climb on my “Visiting Professor of Reality” soapbox.
Here’s the fact: Markets are going lower, in our work. We don’t toss out targets like “Dow 18,000 or lower” lightly. It’s just that right now we’re still in the “adjusting to new reality phase” of what smells like an accidental (we hope!) global biowar.
Still ahead, therefore? The cleaning-up of bad financializations that will have to follow. Shortly, too. The quadrillion of dead and dying derivatives is no sneezer to this geezer. “Mark to Market” is becoming “Mark to Ground Level” rather quickly.
Think the Fed and G20 can “Out-Print Gravity?” Color us skeptical on a good day. Little lithium orotate with that, mayhap?
Rippings and Readings
Dedicated to the fond memory of an earlier era’s younger newscaster who could compose a cogent five-minute newscast b y standing 30-seconds at the wire machine even with a splitting hangover...yessir, that’s talent…
Marketing: Never Stops Selling: Airline mistakenly tells patrons “never a better time to fly”.
Note for Oilman2 – are you buying this one? Pain but No Panic in Texas Oil Patch as Saudis Flood Market?
US Political Disaster Continues: Biden and Sanders tell staff to work from home because of coronavirus. Can you do it for five more years…please?
Speaking of roaches and drugs...U.S. gives ’emergency’ authorization to new Roche coronavirus test that’s 10 times faster.
Presidents For Life: Not only Xi Jinping, seems. The Vladster’s down with the plan, too as we read in Russia’s Regional Governments Back Changes Allowing Putin to Extend His Rule. You bet they do…or else….
For the more genuinely paranoid: Meet the man building a human zoo in China. A what? Is he a subcontractor for the aliens??? (Or, why wouldn’t we cage the politicians in D.C….help me here…grasping….)
And call me the “sonambulance!” 10 commandments for better sleep on World Sleep Day.
On this chipper note, the Making Up Money Dept at the NY Fed Repo Depot only dropped $41.1 billion this morning. Bets on a delayed posting? Catch some unawares?
Our money’s on gravity when the financial nitrous blows off…
Write when you get rich,