Wednesday, 14 January 2015
Chainsaws at the trunk.
The greatest risk to the most blindingly obvious of trades is when the base of the trunk from which all those implied and correlated trades expand in a spreading tree is threatened by either rot or the axe with those far up in the foliage knitting their esoteric finesse missing the obvious. So to those putting on fiddly-widdly cross emerging correlation trades, or those happily selling EUR/USD on European QE expectations, or those selling EM USD debt on funding costs in domestic currency, "HELLLLOOO UP THERE ! Hi, Yes you! There is a bloke down here with a chainsaw chopping through your trunk of ‘Usd rates are going up’
"What was that? No I’m not talking tosh, look at the retail sales figures and look at the response US Treasuries have shown to it. Can’t you hear the shrill screams in the wind up there of ‘New low yield in 30yr?"
I am so concerned that nearly every trade out there is premised upon Usd and US rates going up and Euro growth and Euro rates going down that when the time comes, just as it did last year, for expectations of US rates to be pushed out yet another year (as they are in the UK) then the response across all asset classes will be stunning. All the usual trade suspects will be welcomed back into society and interviewed as persecuted heroes on national TV. “They did WHAT to you Mr High Yield Emerging Market? How could they!” Into that rebounding shock you can throw oil too.
The time is getting closer and my 19th Jan date still stands as the day to roll out the wheelbarrow from the shed and start shipping in the harvest of this year’s yield crop.
Before I go lets look at one thing to cheer us up - Bitcoin sub $200. A large glass of your finest Shadenfreude please landlord. The whole point with bitcoin that nearly everyone seems to miss is that it doesn’t have to have a value. It is a payment system and as such the bitcoin itself is only rented for the nanosecond needed to transfer my Gbp to bitcoin to the Usd that Mr Techno geek selling a bong in colorado needs to use to buy his lump of marsh willow, leaving bitcoin as valued as the electron in a credit card payment or even the plastic the credit card is made of. It really doesn’t have to have a value at all. With only the Winklevoss Bros and the tinfoil hat brigade and the pump and dump industry built up around it holding tomorrows relic perhaps its time to guess the next iron pyrites of financial fashion.