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Thursday, March 24, 2016

JUSTIN TRUDEAU KILLS WITH CUTENESS: you won't believe what happened next!


FT Alphaville - even icebitch Izzy Kamizzy is crushing on Justin now. Because this:

And y'know what? God he's destroying all of politics with stuff like this. And the fiscal stimulus.

Because politicians have spent the past 10-15 years redefining the norms of what a politician is supposed to look and act like, only to have young hunk Justin come along and destroy it.

Before Jr., all politicians were supposed to look and act like constipated serial rapists. I mean, look at Wolfgang:


He's serious, he's frowning, he's a busy man who wants this press conference to wind up quickly so he can get back to his basement where he's got Daniel Craig tied up and hanging from the ceiling. Then maybe he'll cut spending a bit more because the Greeks aren't crying enough.

Or Kasich:


He's serious, he's frowning, and he thinks you got a purty mouth, boy. After he's done with you, maybe he'll pass some more laws criminalizing Planned Parenthood.

Or Stephen Harper:


He's serious, he's frowning, and he promises that Ethiopia shall remain forever part of the glorious Italian empire. As part of that project, he promises to stripmine the other half of Alberta for dirt.

But now these old Nazi cunts have to compete with this:


Who the hell is going to vote for exterminating the poor and racial minorities while handing over more free money to the ultra-rich anymore, when they can vote for a handsome guy who wants to be kind to people?

Trudeau has destroyed politics. Long live the new flesh!

The cynical response to market action


Polemic's Pains - what's next. Linked to without much comment, except that at least the guy usually has an interesting take and looks at markets that I don't. Plus:

Buyback blackout - Corporates are entering a period of buyback restrictions.

And that seems to be when the market usually pukes nowadays.

April - Tis the season to look at Europe. Greece should be causing stress by Brexit time in June, Brexit should be causing Brexit stress by any time now (I still see the Exit vote as higher than the 37% currently priced at the bookies so of course I’ve bought that price looking for a nailbiting just sub 50ish outcome).

Oh God, not Europe again!

Algos - Imagine you are a vast algorithmic trading fund and you have parsed the hell out of the last few CB minutes yet prices have stalled, momentum has faded to the upside and is starting to pick up on the downside in assets you use correlation matrices against. What is your model most likely to do on the European open?

Yup, robo momo. And:

Marc Faber - Someone told me he’s turned bullish.

OK, that's too far. That's like teasing the retarded. In fact it is.

AND SO IT BEGINS: no, really it's just some news and stuff


Waiting out the ice storm right now, need to get to the store and buy food despite now having a bad lung infection. Then I really need to go to university this afternoon just for the stupid attendance marks, despite the whole illness and ice thing, because it's better going into an exam needing an 87 for an A+ than it is needing a 91 for an A+.

So with time to kill, here's some news:


FT - inflation stirs as Fed stands still. I guess someone should have mentioned that the end of the USD rise and the end of the oil fall would eliminate two headwinds pushing against inflation... cuz I did. It's not as good as demand-driven inflation, but we'll take it.

Bloomberg - Bullard makes case for April hike. And thus I guess now the US market needs to sell off in another hissy fit, right?

WSJ Moneybeat - and thus billions pile into long $VIX futures. Y'know, the $VIX futures market isn't big enough to handle a $3.5B inflow in one month. Literally, these clowns are driving the market up and down with their idiotic $VIX bets by warping the signal.

Calculated Risk - chemical activity barometer expands in March. And yet the real economy has none of that piddle smell you get from the market. Why?

Barrons - Japan may surprise with fiscal stimulus in late May. $88 billion is peanuts for a country the size of Japan, but I guess the robots will react positively. Well, there's a good upside risk for the spring.

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

DIVINE INTERVENTION: it's easier than you think


Business Insider - kid survives Brussels terrorist attack after already surviving Boston and Paris terrorist attack. Quote:

An American Mormon missionary has been injured in the Brussels attacks - after surviving bombings in both Boston and Paris.

Mason Wells, 19, from Utah was feet away from an explosion at the Belgian Zaventem airport on Tuesday, one of three attacks across the city which killed at least 31 people and left more than 100 injured.

First, it's not like I wish the kid any harm, but after the third time I think he should maybe ask God why he's always being attacked by terrorists.

"It’s incredible he’d be so close to more than one of these," Bishop Scott Bond of the Latter Day Saints Church in Sandy, Utah, told The New York Daily News.

No kidding! Maybe you should be sending your young missionaries to somewhere safer, like Vermont.

“I think any of us would be seriously shaken, but I think he’s someone who could handle this better than anybody. He’s the kind of young man to somehow turn this into a positive,” he added.

Into a positive? It's not like being bitten by a radioactive spider, dude.

Chris Lambson, a friend of the Wells family, said he thinks divine interventions have helped the young man survive in the face of such extraordinary circumstances.

Um...

No.

A divine intervention would have been for God to tell the more radical followers of his Arabian prophet to please wait a sec for that young Mormon kid over there to leave the area before blowing yourselves up, kthxbye.

Or maybe for God to tell the more radical followers of his Arabian prophet to maybe quit being such assholes and maybe try bringing a bit of happiness and joy into the world, y'know, since that might persuade a heck of a lot more people about the rightness of their God's teachings.

It's not divine intervention when you survive being struck by lightning three times; but it possibly is divine intervention when you are struck by lightning three times.

The former high school football and lacrosse player had four months left on his two-year Mormon mission, and was planning to major in engineering at the University of Utah.

NOTE TO SELF: STAY AWAY FROM ALL BRIDGES AND BUILDINGS IN UTAH

Project engineering: an xkcd primer


Stickfigure cartoon:


Or, you could just do what I used to do:

1) Submit an estimate based on a fixed percentage of construction cost.

2) When you get blowback from that, break down every single conceivable bloody task into exact time quantities, and total them up in Excel. Multiply this by the labour charge-out rates. This will most likely give you the exact same fee as (1) above, which is why we've been using fixed percentage estimates for 50 years.

3) when you get blowback from that, ask the PM what he wants your estimate to be ffs.

4) Take the PM's answer from (3) to the regional manager, and get told that no, we're not in the business of doing work for free, we're in the business of making money for our shareholders, and that's why around here we submit estimates based on a fixed percentage of construction cost, and what was your original estimate anyway, well that's a bit light, I'd add 20% to that if it was me.

5) Submit the original fixed percentage estimate to your PM and tell him he should discuss his concerns with the regional manager.

This is sometimes followed months after by

6) Look on the network drive for the project bid, find out we didn't win the job, and then see that the asshole PM cut your fee by 25%, which was smaller than the rounding error for the environmental department's bloated, insanely high fee.

Which then entails

7) Next time the PM asks you for an estimate, say "You don't have any professional respect for my estimates anyway, just make something up. If I go over budget I'll just start charging to environmental."

The PDAC puke was a couple weeks late in coming....


Tim-berrrr!!!!:


Punching through the -2SD Bollinger line is a bit bearish, methinks.

The funny thing is that this past few months' advance in gold seemed to be driven by the US fear hedgers, and yet today with gold down the US equity indices are still looking weak due to the "we want to sell at resistance because everyone else is going to do it" strategy.

But if Wall Street Whitey decides to sell gold for any reason, well, there's your marginal buyer out of the market. Hope you made a quick buck these past few months. Maybe India has a good monsoon later this year?

Oh well. If you want to trade by the principle that everything is determined by people's irrational belief in TA voodoo, then maybe you should assume gold is going down to its October pivot at $1150-$1160, which was also the broken support in late 2014 and early 2015.


Tuesday, March 22, 2016

In case you're wondering


I have a cold, and it's progressed into a sinus infection and fever.

So don't expect much out of me for the next few days.



Sunday, March 20, 2016

WE'VE SEEN THE TOP IN GOLD: here's why it's all downhill from here


I guess $1250 was the top in gold, and it's all downhill from here.

Because this:


Rickards was the guy who warned of imminent hyperinflation... in 2009. Then in 2014, with imminent hyperinflation still not immanent (ha! see what I did there?), he warned of the coming collapse of the international monetary system.

I assume that in both of those books, he touted gold as a store of value?

Well, in his new book, it also seems he's touting gold as a store of value.


Sunday evening news


Stuff:

New Deal Demoncrat - JOLTS late cycle weakness. Dammit guy, you're really scared, aren't you?

New Deal Demoncrat - the horrifying weekly indicators. Most of it looks horrible. Man, I bet Bill McBride is scared too....

Calculated Risk - nope, I'm not scared. He's still not on recession watch.

NY Times - as women take over a male-dominated field, the pay drops. I guess that's because their marginal product of labour is lower than men's, because women are soft and have boobies. I should ask my econ profs. I assume the female ones have a different opinion than the male ones, given the recent landmark court ruling against my university....