Morning Report: Global sell-off continues

Vital Statistics:

Last Change
S&P futures 2758.75 -22
Eurostoxx index 359.68 -7.24
Oil (WTI) 71.9 -1.3
10 year government bond yield 3.18%
30 year fixed rate mortgage 4.95%

 

Stocks are heavy yet again as the global sell-off continues. Bonds and MBS are up.

 

The stock market sold off heavily yesterday on no real news. There wasn’t any one particular catalyst – some in the business press are blaming Powell’s comments last week, others are pointing to a lack of stock buybacks ahead of earnings, and others are talking about the FAANG stocks giving up their leadership position. Whatever the reason, it is important to keep in mind that the stock market is less than 5% from its all time high, and the VIX is hanging around in the low 20s. Stocks don’t go up in a straight line, and they don’t go down in one either.

 

The global sell-off is creating a flight to quality.  The 10 year bond yield is back below 3.2%. Mortgage backed securities will lag that move, generally wanting to make sure that it is “real.”

 

Notwithstanding the recent moves, investors have generally been pulling money out of bond ETFs. Note that shorter-duration funds did receive inflows, more evidence that money market instruments are beginning to attract assets after a long slumber.

 

The Producer Price Index rose 0.2% last month, in line with expectations. Transportation services (i.e trucking, rail and air freight charges) were the source of inflationary pressure. Energy prices are probably driving that, although labor shortages are an issue as well, especially in trucking. The PPI was the first of 3 inflation readings this week. We will get CPI today and Import / Export prices on Friday.

 

Wholesale inventories rose by 1% in September, which follows a strong increase in July. This should provide a boost for third quarter GDP numbers.

 

Hurricane Michael made landfall last night as a Category 4 storm. Initial damage estimates from Wells Fargo top $10 billion. Expect to see an uptick in delinquencies towards the end of the year. Gulf Oil production will be affected as well, although oil prices are generally correlating with every other asset as the global sell-off gathers momentum.

 

84 Responses

  1. So looks like “A Star Is Born” is a cause of rape culture and is thus “problematic”.

    https://www.vox.com/culture/2018/10/11/17949016/a-star-is-born-gender-consent-criticism-sexism

    Which of course leads to this problem:

    “But we also have to ask why we aren’t telling more stories that don’t reflect this value system, that actively challenge capitalist greed, patriarchy, racism, homophobia, and other prejudices without becoming preachy and didactic.”

    https://www.vox.com/culture/2018/10/10/17925740/tv-protagonists-sexual-misconduct-antiheroes

    Well, because PC culture is inherently preachy and didactic. You make movies based on getting the right political outcome then it’s not art. It’s propaganda.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hollywood has been preachy and didactic since the 80s, which is about when i stopped watching TV and going to movies altogether.

      Like

    • Well, because PC culture is inherently preachy and didactic. You make movies based on getting the right political outcome then it’s not art. It’s propaganda.

      … which is boring. Even with explosions and special fx. You can do Captain Planet in an era with only a dozen channels and a young, naive audience with political positions and, most importantly, a low budget. When things get expensive, they have to attract an audience for their existence to be justified.

      Put another way, there are creative works that do everything Vox talks about. They tend to be inexpensive or Oscar bait, rarely attract anything like a serious audience, and tend not to do that well in the market place. You have to have a large audience that agrees with you and wants to hear those stories because it feels good to them to have their biases confirmed, and the author is in a tiny, tiny minority of the entertainment-seeking public.

      Regarding A Star Is Born.
      The films are sustained close-ups of his many tortured emotions; she’s essentially a sexy singing lamp.

      I see nothing wrong with that.

      That being said, either it works and people want to see it or it doesn’t and they don’t. 95% of people don’t do a diversity analysis of the film they want to see, so it’s really irrelevant both to the creative process (which should be whatever the vision of the creator is, not based on a critic’s contemporary agenda) and the consumer process–does this look good? Do I want to see it? Will I pay money for it?

      This version of A Star Is Born puts forth the idea that a woman’s “no” always secretly means “yes,” and that even if she does mean “no,” she can be worn down until she agrees, or else put on the spot and pressured into consent.

      Movies do that all the time. Have forever.

      In an early scene — our introduction to her home life — Ally gets home from a night out and her father asks her to come greet his friends. She says no, she has to sleep, but he lies to her and tells her it’s a friend’s birthday to manipulate her into hanging out. She winds up cleaning the kitchen, losing her window of time for sleep.

      I’m not sure the author understands how either movies or storytelling work.

      Once her career takes off, her manager pressures her to change her hair color, add backup dancers, and overhaul her musical style. She initially says no to all of this, but ultimately is coerced into doing it all. The new, watered-down pop songs are ones she wrote, but it’s not clear whether she’s truly comfortable with any of these changes

      I’m like 100% sure this person is completely missing the point, and unable to see the forest for the trees. A: it’s a long established rags-to-disappointing-riches trope, and it’s not a blessing of these things. It’s a criticism.

      Narratives where a woman’s no always means yes directly contribute to rape culture.

      Christ.

      It’s a movie.

      There’s no alternative representation of women excelling in a career independent of a man’s actions, direction, success, or reaction to her success.

      The author clearly doesn’t understand what movies are or how they work.

      Ah, well.

      Like

  2. Progressives are continually frustrated that some people refuse to take their assigned roles in the Kavanaugh fight:

    https://www.theatlantic.com/ideas/archive/2018/10/why-black-men-relate-brett-kavanaugh/572776/

    Liked by 1 person

    • When men of color see themselves in the embattled Supreme Court justice, they’re not seeing the bigger picture.

      And instead of trying to change tactics to accommodate how people actually feel and think, they are going to write articles and appear on TV shows telling them how they are wrong and need to think the way enlightened progressives think they should.

      I’m sure that will work out well.

      If Kavanaugh were black, how many people would empathize and relate to his circumstances?

      Um, Clarence Thomas? There’s kind of an example there, easily available. Not accused of gang rapes, admittedly, but still. Black. Supreme Court justice. Difficult nomination. H.W. Bush stayed the course. Etc.

      And is the conclusion that if you’re white and grow up with a little money and have a family with well-connected friends, false accusations of rape are totally cool and should be immediately believed? I feel like this is a hard argument to make for a lot of people. Including a lot of women and a lot of African-Americans.

      Like

  3. What’s the point of more campaigning if your record is one of capitulation?

    https://www.politico.com/story/2018/10/11/senate-democrats-judges-895168

    Like

    • I was told there was a blue wave coming. Now Politico is saying some D senators are in danger?

      Liked by 1 person

    • They are unlikely to win or lose based on the votes of those upset they confirmed a budge of lower court judges almost no major network is covering in detail and about which they may well be largely unaware. They need to get back home and remind people they are alive and if they ever got some pork that benefitted a lot of voters to the state.

      Like

  4. Goddamn right white women! Shut your sucks!

    It’s about time someone said it.

    Like

    • I rolled my eyes so hard at this article i almost saw the bald spot on the back of my head…

      Liked by 1 person

    • Last week, Sen. Susan Collins doubled down on white supremacy and patriarchy in America. Women and survivors of all genders will never forgive her for it.

      Okay, I get the patriarchy thing. But how was Collins doubling down on white supremacy?

      I wonder how this will work out, strategically.

      2010 Census had American demographics as:

      White alone – 72.4%
      Black or African American – 12.6%
      Asian – 4.8%
      Native Americans and Alaska Natives – 0.9%
      Native Hawaiians and Other Pacific Islanders – 0.2%
      Two or more races – 2.9%
      Some other race – 6.2%
      Hispanic and Latino Americans (of any race) – 16.3%

      Then female population generally is about 52%-54%? Something like that? So as a total, black women represent 7% of the population.

      Is it really wise to alienate and generally yell at half the population and THEN go after white women and possibly everybody who is not a black women and demand they obey . . . I realize it’s just one article in HuffPo but it’s not the only place I’ve heard the message.

      White women are finally feeling the rage we have felt for the last 400 years

      I can’t even. The implication that she, as a successful and elite African-American woman in 2018 America is in the same position as slaves in the 1600s (or, heck, present day slaves in the Middle East now). And that nobody has ever suffered except because of race and gender. That the word revolves around her and people exactly like her and only those people . . . sheesh.

      Like many women of color and unlike Dr. Ford, she wasn’t extended empathy or permitted any vulnerability. Her testimony before a group of white men (many of whom are still in elected office) who coldly questioned her credibility, marked one of the first times women openly challenged rape culture in America.

      Baby steps, I guess? But I’m still not seeing how “long dong silver” and “public hair on a Coke can” equals “rape culture”.

      As Brittney Cooper has written, black women’s status at the absolute bottom of the American hierarchy, with no access to male or white privilege, has meant that we literally have nothing to lose and everything to potentially gain by putting our bodies on the line. We’ve done this time and again. We cannot keep doing it on our own.

      We’ve–and be “we’ve”, I mean I–have done everything and you’ve done nothing. Now, step up and do what I say!

      Always a great sales strategy.

      The treatment of Dr. Ford showed once and for all that whiteness is not enough to protect white women from patriarchy.

      Um, what?

      I don’t say this to shame white women.

      No, you just say they’ve always had it easy and are partially to blame for the patriarchy and rape culture and have never done anything, leaving it to black woman to do everything. But not trying the shame you.

      to sacrifice their bodies and support our work with their dollars as well as their voices

      “sacrifice their bodies” . . . she says that multiple times. That’s some kind of code to violent protest, right?

      And of course, give us your money. Expiate your guilt with your wallets!

      It means voting for women of color who will fight to end rape culture, white supremacy and patriarchy.

      This feels a little like saying, “Give us all power over you. We totally won’t crush you and make you suffer or seek revenge on you in anyway. Come on, we’re all gals!”

      In November, we will replace rape apologists with the women the march inspired to run against them.

      Maybe. I’m not yet convinced this sort of stuff gets you there. Back in the day, communists hid who they were and what they believed in order to get elected. I’m not sure we’re entirely past that yet.

      Over the last five weeks, we’ve rocked the foundation of the white male patriarchy.

      That’s a very Trumpian mischaracterization, if you ask me.

      Tamika Mallory is an esteemed social justice leader, advocate and activist.

      “Esteemed”. I wonder if that’s on her business card.

      Like

  5. Quote of the Day:

    “One might be forgiven for thinking that “wokeness” is, in fact, a mere virtue signal among the white upper classes in their own struggle for power and influence among themselves. Imagine that.”

    http://nymag.com/intelligencer/2018/10/andrew-sullivan-the-danger-of-trumps-accomplishments.html

    Liked by 1 person

    • and galvanized a younger generation

      The Kavanaugh hearings did no such thing. Most of the younger generation is barely aware of it, and if they are, are probably aware of it enough so they can comment to *look* aware to friends and on social media, and have as much intention of voting on that, or any other issue, as the youth has ever had.

      and it could cement a worrying shift among young white men toward the GOP since 2016

      Why would young white men . . . and soon to become, why would any man of any race, period . . . be attracted to the Democratic party, given their post-Obama trajectory?

      is her account of how indispensable women were to the construction of the conservative movement

      Sullivan’s surprise suggests to me he has never really understood conservatism.

      And nothing happened. No one cared.[about Trump’s finances, as detailed in the NYT]

      Of course not. He could not have seriously thought that anybody would. Tribalism covers the Trumpistas, and indifference covers everybody whose not already a dyed-in-the-wool progressive or leftist.

      And here you had the best newspaper in the world, dismantling the central myth of a presidency in a Pulitzer-worthy investigation … and it made not the slightest difference.

      At this point, that’s like saying you have the best reality-tv-dating show on TV. Or the best 99¢ pack of generic ramen noodles that money can buy. The mainstream media and the NYT has worked hard to create a world where nobody except a narrow band of people care that deeply about what they have to say. They made their bed and now they must lie in it.

      We’ve also seen the rather successful reframing of the Mueller probe. Trump’s absurd counter-narrative — the real collusion was between the Clintons and Russia! — has given the right some way to handle the reality of an otherwise disastrous scandal.

      Or maybe it’s all bullshit, and Trump-supporters just instinctually assume it’s bullshit, and people who have some idea of how social media and the Internet work don’t believe that anybody covering it as a story do so in anything but abject ignorance.

      In a world where the media keeps referring to common-as-water port scans as “hacking attempts”, no one should take their opinions or reporting on “hacking” of anything seriously, ever.

      What Browning understands is the critical role that traditional conservatism has historically played in the construction of authoritarianism and fascism.

      Although Nazism and fascism both had seriously progressive underpinnings. It’s hard to see Nazism and fascism as anything but progressive projects, outside of the nationalism that characterized them at the time (and which has been replaced with globalism in the present).

      But the risk — as occurred in 1930s Germany — is that the pawn can become the master.

      I like Sullivan, and always have, but like his Trig-trutherism, sometimes he seems really dumb.

      Like

      • It’s hard to see Nazism and fascism as anything but progressive projects, outside of the nationalism that characterized them at the time (and which has been replaced with globalism in the present).

        They were born out of leftism. The left thinks that simply because they fought with the Communists, they can’t be leftists. That is like saying Hillary can’t be a Democrat because she fought with Bernie.

        Liked by 1 person

        • And other people who haven’t done a deep study of Mussolini’s socialist roots, or the state-sponsored progressivism of the Nazis can be easily influenced by the patriotism and nationalism of early 20th century progressivism and say: well, conservatives today are all about “patriotism”, therefore those things were conservative. Or parallel with Republicanism.

          But aside from some similarity regarding national patriotism and pride of military service, there’s not much in the state control of business and media that is really conservative. Not to mention the healthcare plan (we’d call it Hitlercare today!) and arguments about equality and community, and the drive to mandate state control of diet and exercise for all good Aryans . . .

          Liked by 1 person

  6. See, this is why men don’t respect women. They’re all hysterical, emotional volcanos incapable of perspective. Sure, a guy will pretend to listen but really, they just want to keep the peace, hope you’ll shut up soon so we can get back to what we’re doing and think, while you’re droning on interminably, “thank god for free internet porn.”

    Yet in that roiling moment, screaming at my husband as if he represented every clueless male on the planet (and I every angry woman of 2018), I announced that I hate all men and wish all men were dead.

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/outlook/2018/10/12/thanks-not-raping-us-all-you-good-men-its-not-enough/?noredirect=on&utm_term=.f2715b7a4ccf

    This broad wallows in her desire to be helpless and at the mercy of men.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Insanity is yelling at your husband because you don’t like that a SCOTUS judge was seated.

      Might as well yell at the paperboy or a cloud.

      She’s lost her marbles. Hopefully her husband had the good sense to turn off his hearing aid.

      Like

    • Well, I hope he did right by her and started divorce proceedings immediately in order to free her from her oppression. It would be the progressive thing to do.

      Like

      • I might not divorce my wife if she did that. But if she then told the entire frickin’ world she did that, I don’t think I’d have a choice to to have papers served pronto. Or I’d have to be the guy who put up with that insane garbage AND have the whole world know it.

        Like

  7. FYI I finally landed in London. So far I have avoided the BBC and the rest of the horrible UK media, but I’m sure that won’t last. You all will get an earful once I start listening to the BBC’s Reporting on the US.

    Now that Kavanaugh is confirmed, I look forward to RBG’s departure from the Court and ACB’s confirmation process!

    Like

    • Man, I hope so. Nothing against RBG, but we need a justice in that seat that can stay awake.

      Also, I get that wanting to “taste liberal tears” and “own the libs” is immature and non-productive. But from a detached, observational perspective I will be interested in seeing the behavior on the left when a rock solid conservative woman takes RBG’s place.

      I see accusations that she’s not a woman, that she’s a rapist-enabler or a rape apologist, that she’s a white supremacist, that she’s a gender traitor. And, of course, the press will be going through her garbage. And perhaps Andrew Sullivan can investigate her uterus. Good times will be had by all!

      Like

    • Glad you made it there safely. How about some pics of the digs?

      Like

      • McWing:

        How about some pics of the digs?

        This is the view this morning from my first floor flat (or what you might call my ffflat.) A little noisy, but only temporary. I’ll be looking for something more permanent in the next couple months.

        Like

        • Nice! Kinda crotch-level to tour buses. Did you get yourself some sort of protection from being knifed or acid thrown on you?

          Will you be living in London or in a burb? Also, what’s your company’s plan if there’s a hard Brexit? Would finance be effected?

          Liked by 1 person

        • Currently living just west of Victoria Station, in Belgravia, but it is just temporary. Eventually I will most likely end up in Wimbledon, which is about halfway between my office in the City and where we used to live in Surrey where all my wife’s friends are.

          We have all kinds of plans for Brexit, as it does indeed have a big effect on finance. The biggest problem if there is a hard Brexit is that companies based in London will not be licensed to talk to clients on the continent. So our main plan is to establish a Frankfurt office where our sales guys will be based, but keep everything else (trading, back office, admin) in London. Since I am on the trading side, it hopefully won’t impact me too much.

          I have not seen any knife or acid attacks yet, but I must say that there are a lot of Arabs and Eastern Europeans in London. It’s always been a very cosmopolitan place with lots of foreigners, but I do find the number of Eastern Europeans to be surprising.

          Like

        • I’d love to hear some “man on the street” opinions on American politics both from London and outside of London.

          Like

        • what part of london are you living in?

          Like

  8. Speaking of “speaking truth to power”:

    https://www.themarysue.com/marvel-star-wars-chuck-wendig-fired/

    Chuck Wendig lost a dream gig at Disney because he made the mistake of assuming his liberal views were so universal that Disney would continue to put up with profanity-laced tirades that at least implied violence was coming for that half of the country that has the temerity to disagree with him.

    You would think folks at Disney would get the message. Roseanne, James Gunn (admittedly, he would have had to have gone back years and cleaned up his Twitter feed) and now Wendig–who was lower on the totem pole than either Gunn or Roseanne.

    Disney is sending you people messages. Work for us, be civil and uncontroversial on your social media. Whose the next moron who will miss that message? Or take Ambien?

    Like

  9. This is the regrettably typical quality of BBC reporting on US politics. It is ostensibly explaining why the US Supreme Court nomination process has become so political, all without once mentioning the name Robert Bork or having any discussion at all about abortion.

    It even makes the absurd claim that “Things changed in 2010, with the retirement of John Paul Stevens…”. Riiiiight.

    https://www.bbc.com/news/world-us-canada-45632035

    Like

  10. Once again, proof that men make better women than women do.

    https://dailycaller.com/2018/10/14/biological-male-wins-womens-world-cycling-championship/

    One of my favorite quips, besides “Dyslexics, untie!”, is ”My wife and I are both feminists, but as a man, I’m slightly better at it then she is.”

    Like

    • The logical endpoint of the argument being made would be to eliminate men’s and women’s categories as discrimination, not let men compete as women.

      Like

      • Well, it’s been now conclusively proven that men are better at being women than women are so they’re going to have to do something to avoid a catostrophic inferiority complex.

        Like

      • World class female track athletes are roughly on par with high school boys… Most female Olympic track and field gold medal winners would struggle to qualify for their respective state’s high school boys finals.

        I think the difference between the male and female world records in the 100m is a whole second…

        I know Hollywood and the media love to pretend that women would beat men in these events if only we socialized girls better. It is moronic, and largely the purview of fat women and beta males who have never competed physically in their lives…

        Like

  11. Didn’t watch the interview but judging by this post end the comments Trump must have hit a home run.

    https://m.dailykos.com/stories/1804381

    Like

  12. “You’ve killed us all, you arrogant ass!”

    “In NH, the Democratic Party’s traditional Jefferson Jackson dinner in 2016 became the Kennedy-Clinton dinner after protests over slave-owning. This year, after MeToo, it became the Eleanor Roosevelt dinner. First speaker: Alec Baldwin. http://ow.ly/SToN30mexUe

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Wow. She actually had to do it.

    “Warren releases DNA test suggesting distant Native American ancestor”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/politics/warren-releases-dna-test-suggesting-distant-native-american-ancestor/2018/10/15/187ce196-d060-11e8-8c22-fa2ef74bd6d6_story.html

    Trump trolled her just as well as he did Obama when Obama felt compelled to release his birth certificate.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I always like Matt Taibbi as a media critic:

    “I remember being behind the rope line at Trump rallies, and he would literally point to us and say, “Look at those bloodsuckers — they didn’t think I could come this far.” He made us the representatives of the condescending elite, and anyone who’s watched pro wrestling knows that the baby-faced good guys in the room are the people you want to see hit with a chair. Trump instinctively understood that, but we in the press didn’t, because we all watch The West Wing instead of WWE. ”

    https://www.jacobinmag.com/2018/10/matt-taibbi-interview-fairway-manufacturing-consent

    Like

    • So far, though, it’s true that only the Right has been able to really make use of this political weapon. For a lot of Democratic strategists, the takeaway from Trump’s victory was that they needed someone who could manipulate the media as well as Trump does.

      Only the Right has been able to use the media as a political weapon????

      The left is so self-unaware that it is mind boggling sometimes…

      Liked by 1 person

      • Beto O’Rourke was unavailable for comment.

        Like

      • No, only the Right has been able to use media criticism as a political weapon.

        It’s in response to this premise:

        “And since 1988, popular frustration with the media has become widespread. But it’s the Right that’s been most successful in capitalizing on this frustration politically. Could the Left replicate this? Is there a way to weaponize this anti-media sentiment in left-wing terms?”

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        • jnc:

          No, only the Right has been able to use media criticism as a political weapon.

          Presumably because of the inherent difficulty in both using the media itself as a political weapon while also truying to criticize it at the same time. But I guess Taibbi is setting his sights high.

          Like

      • They also aren’t getting it. It’s like folks watching two black-belts in a karate going on it, and they think the answer is to rapidly move their arms in choppy motions and make woosh sounds with their mouths.

        Like

    • Taibbi:

      When I talked to Chomsky about this for the book, he expressed regrets that Manufacturing Consent had encouraged people on the Left to distrust the media. His point was that the press mostly tells the truth, but that this truth is narrowly constrained.

      Talk about historical revisionism!

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Another good one.

    Like

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