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Futures Bounce, Gilts Tumble In BOE-Driven Rollercoaster Session

Futures Bounce, Gilts Tumble In BOE-Driven Rollercoaster Session

US stocks were set to bounce, ending a brutal five-day losing streak, amid…



Futures Bounce, Gilts Tumble In BOE-Driven Rollercoaster Session

US stocks were set to bounce, ending a brutal five-day losing streak, amid confusion over what the BOE will do in two days, amid hope that tomorrow's CPI print will come in lower than expected, and as Treasury yields eased off multi-year highs - at least initially - and investors put aside concerns that overheating inflation could offer more fodder to hawkish Federal Reserve policy makers amid speculation that things are breaking in far too many markets after it emerged that the Fed had sent a substantial amount of dollars to Switzerland this week in the first material use of the dollar swap facility in 2022. Nasdaq futures gained 0.9% by 7:30 a.m. in New York while S&P 500 futures rose 0.7% a day after the benchmark index nearly erased its October gains, while UK bonds tumbled and the pound rose amid UK policy confusion. While global risk sentiment earlier received a boost from a report suggesting the Bank of England could extend its emergency bond repurchases, a bank spokesperson quashed that speculation and said the program would still end on Friday, leaving traders in the dark as to what will happen.

Meanwhile, Treasury yields and the dollar were little changed as traders await a key US inflation measure due Thursday that’s set to return to a four-decade high, underscoring broad and elevated price pressures that are pushing the Federal Reserve toward yet another large interest-rate hike next month. US investors are also looking to corporate earnings for clues about Fed policy.

Among notable moves in premarket trading, Uber Technologies edged back up after the previous session’s 10% slump that was driven by the Biden administration’s proposal on classifying gig workers’ employment status. Analysts said there was limited near-term risk, given implementation was “far from imminent.” Chip stocks were set to recoup some of this week’s losses stemming from fresh curbs on China’s access to US semiconductor technology. Norwegian Cruise Line Holdings also gained in premarket trading, after UBS raised its recommendation on the stock to buy, amid strong improvement in bookings. PepsiCo gained 1.9% in premarket trading after the company raised its forecast for the full year and said consumers continue to purchase more of its snack foods and soft drinks despite rising inflation.

In the US, investors have been laser-focused on how the Fed might respond to inflation figures due Thursday. While economists expect the consumer price index reading for September to have declined slightly versus a year earlier, a surprise increase could send stocks tumbling, JPMorgan's trading desk warned. Given the Fed has so far shown little sign of toning down its hawkishness, even in the face of a potential economic recession and weaker company earnings, many analysts expect equity bounces to be short-lived.

“In the back of everyone’s mind is tomorrow’s CPI print, with many investors worried that it may be as strong as the jobs report on Friday,” said Neil Campling, head of TMT research at Mirabaud Securities. “Bears are firmly in control and any rallies could be incapable of sustaining a bid for more than a few days.”

“While futures positioning is now slightly less extreme, it is still a very bearish set up into what is seen as a binary market event tomorrow,” said Carl Dooley, head of EMEA trading at Cowen in London. That makes it “natural to see some bear covering, with the remaining bulls having another roll of the dice.”

The big story overnight was the flip-flopping rollercoaster from the BOE: the yield on 30-year gilts rose above 5% for the first time since late September after the Bank of England confirmed its plan to end emergency bond purchases on Friday and a report showed the UK economy shrank unexpectedly in August. Sterling rallied more than 1% after a report from Politico that the government may make further fiscal U-turns.

“The Bank of England is a test case for how hawkish central banks can be without doing damage to financial stability,” said Michael Metcalfe, global head of macro strategy at State Street Global Markets. So far the "test" is failing miserably.

In other news, Q3 earniungs season kicks off on Friday when several top Wall Street banks are set to report including JPMorgan, although analysts have already downgraded estimates for corporate America in recent weeks, a glum outlook by management teams could further pressure stocks. Lori Calvasina, head of US equity strategy at RBC Capital Markets, cut her year-end target for the S&P 500 Index to 3,800 from 4,200 citing a weak economic backdrop through the end of 2023. However, her new target implies a nearly 6% gain from Tuesday’s close.

In European equities, consumer products, chemicals and food & beverages are the strongest-performing sectors. Euro Stoxx 50 rose 0.4% as Spain's IBEX lagged, dropping 0.5%  Credit Suisse drops as much as 5.0%, adding to a tumultuous month for the Swiss lender, after Bloomberg reported that the Justice Department is investigating whether it continued to help US clients hide assets from authorities. Here are other notable European movers:

  • LVMH rises as much as 3.2% on stronger-than-expected organic revenue growth, signaling that the wealthy are still spending, and allaying fears of a China slowdown from Covid-19 curbs.
  • Chr. Hansen climbs as much as 15%, the most since 2012, after the Danish enzymes and food cultures manufacturer reported better- than-expected 4Q results, including a wide topline beat, Jefferies says.
  • Leonteq rallies as much as 7.8% after the company responded to a Financial Times report that had driven the stock lower in recent days.
  • Bossard rises as much as 4.2% after nine- month sales beat estimates.
  • UK domestic stocks underperform amid gilt market volatility following earlier speculation over the timing of an end to the Bank of England’s bond-buying program. Homebuilders, real estate, retail and domestic banks are among biggest decliners with Barclays falling as much as 5.3%.
  • Philips slumps as much as 12%, hitting the lowest in more than a decade, after the Dutch medical technology company cut its outlook due to worse-than-expected supply-chain difficulties, prompting analysts to doubt its ability to meet 2022 targets.
  • Kloeckner falls as much as 14%, the most intraday since May 2020, after the steel company revised its full-year guidance, which Jefferies said implies a 20%-25% reduction to consensus estimates.

Earlier in the session, Asian equities were mixed after a three-day rout, as Chinese shares rebounded in a volatile trading session, while overall sentiment remained jittery ahead of the release of the US inflation report. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index erased an early-session loss of as much as 0.8% and traded down just 0.1% as of 5:02 p.m. in Hong Kong Wednesday, with financial shares lifting the broader market. Still, the benchmark hovered near a two-year low. Chinese stocks bounced back strongly in afternoon trading as bargain hunters piled into the nation’s battered shares, with the CSI 300 Index closing 1.5% higher, the most in two months. Investors were worried about the Covid-Zero policy and an economic slowdown despite an upbeat set of aggregate financing and loans data released on Tuesday.

“With supportive valuations and better earnings outlook, downside may be limited from current levels,” said Vey-Sern Ling, an analyst at Union Bancaire Privee. Still, “China has too many outstanding issues currently that drag investor sentiment. Investors may not be willing to buy equities given the macro uncertainties.” Sentiment also remained fragile after Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey said the bank would end emergency gilt purchases as planned this week, in the face of market pressure to expend the program.  US consumer price data due Thursday will be crucial in defining the size of the Federal Reserve’s interest-rate hike at the November meeting. Economists expect inflation to top 8% again.  “The tightening of US financial conditions, global and China growth slowdowns have sharply weighed on Asian equities this year,” said Rajat Agarwal, Asia equity strategist at Societe Generale SA. “Korea and Taiwan, the two semiconductor-driven markets have been the worst affected. A fading semiconductor cycle, geopolitical issues and more recently the semiconductor exports curbs have pushed the valuations to a more than five-year low on the two markets.” South Korean stocks erased losses to close higher after the central bank pivoted back to half-point interest-rate increases

Japanese stocks closed a directionless day slightly lower, pushing losses to a third day, weighed down by electronics makers. The Topix fell 0.1% to close at 1,869.00, while the Nikkei was virtually unchanged at 26,396.83. Tokyo Electron Ltd. contributed the most to the Topix Index decline, decreasing 4.4%. Out of 2,168 stocks in the index, 908 rose and 1,151 fell, while 109 were unchanged.

Australian stocks snapped a three day rout, led by financial stocks. The S&P/ASX 200 index edged higher to close at 6,647.50 after a three-day drubbing, with traders awaiting US inflation data due Thursday for further clues on Federal Reserve interest rate hikes. Financial stocks gained, led by Bank of Queensland, offsetting losses in mining and energy stocks. Coronado Global Resources was among the top gainers after the coal miner confirmed it’s in talks with Peabody Energy on a merger. In New Zealand, the S&P/NZX 50 index fell 0.8% to 10,873.23.

Stocks in India gained for the first time in four sessions, helped by real estate and consumer goods companies that had seen sharp declines earlier this week. Investors will be monitoring India’s consumer inflation data for September to be released later Wednesday to gauge the outlook for local shares. Software exporter Wipro reported quarterly earnings below consensus estimates.  The S&P BSE Sensex rose 0.8% to 57,625.91 in Mumbai, while the NSE Nifty 50 Index was higher by an equal measure. All of BSE Ltd.’s 19 sector sub-indexes advanced.

In FX, the Bloomberg Dollar Spot Index was little changed as the greenback traded mixed versus its Group-of-10 peers. the yen led G-10 losses and slipped to a fresh 24- year low of 146.43 per dollar as traders tested the resolve of Japanese authorities to intervene as key US inflation data may drive further weakness. The British pound led G-10 gains after volatile session. It earlier erased gains against the dollar while gilts extended a decline after the BOE confirmed that the bond-buying scheme will still end on Friday. Sterling had risen after the Financial Times reported that the BOE told lenders it was prepared to extend the program past Oct. 14 end date if market conditions demanded it. Bearish sentiment in the pound is the strongest in two weeks when it comes to short-term bets as hedging costs keep rallying. The euro was steady around $0.97 as Bunds and Italian bonds fell led by the long end of the curve. The Aussie inched lower.

In rates, Treasuries are mixed with the curve steeper as US trading gets under way, led by dramatic steepening in UK bond market after Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey late Tuesday said the central bank’s bond buying would end this week. Focal points of US session include September PPI and 10-year auction, following cool reception for Tuesday’s 3-year. US yields little changed at front end, the 10Y yield rises by 1bp to  3.95%, steepening 2s10s by ~1.5bp, 5s30s by ~2bp. US auction cycle continues with $32b 10- year note reopening at 1pm New York time, concludes Thursday with 30-year reopening. WI 10-year yield at around 3.96% is above auction stops since 2009 and ~63bp cheaper than last month’s result. UK gilts remain near worst levels of the session with 30-year yields cheaper by ~18bp on the day and UK 2s10s, 5s30s spreads steeper by 30bp and 15bp. Australia’s bonds gained for the first day in five after RBA Assistant Governor Luci Ellis said the central bank’s neutral interest rate is likely to be at least 2.5%, compared with the current cash-rate target of 2.6%.

In commodities, WTI trades within Tuesday’s range, marginally falling to near $89.33. Polish pipeline operator said on Tuesday evening it detected a leak in the Druzhba pipeline; cause is unknown; leak detected in one of two lines, second line is working as normal. Russia's Transfneft said it has received notice from Polish operator PERN about the leak at Druzbha; oil pumping towards Poland continues, according to IFX. Polish top official for energy infrastructure said there are no grounds to believe leak in Druzhba pipeline was sabotage, adds leak was probably caused by accidental damage. Spot gold is modestly firmer as the upside for the Buck remains capped for now, but the yellow metal remains under its 21DMA (USD 1,673.34/oz). LME metals are mixed with copper relatively flat but aluminium is underperforming following a large build in LME warehouse stocks.

To the day ahead now, and data releases include the US PPI reading for September, along with UK GDP and Euro Area industrial production for August. From central banks, we’ll get the FOMC minutes from the September meeting, and hear from the Fed’s Barr, Kashkari and Bowman, ECB President Lagarde, the ECB’s Knot and De Cos, as well as the BoE’s Pill, Haskel and Mann. Finally, earnings releases include PepsiCo.

Market Snapshot

  • S&P 500 futures up 0.5% to 3,617.00
  • MXAP little changed at 137.63
  • MXAPJ little changed at 444.71
  • Nikkei little changed at 26,396.83
  • Topix down 0.1% to 1,869.00
  • Hang Seng Index down 0.8% to 16,701.03
  • Shanghai Composite up 1.5% to 3,025.51
  • Sensex up 0.6% to 57,503.85
  • Australia S&P/ASX 200 little changed at 6,647.54
  • Kospi up 0.5% to 2,202.47
  • STOXX Europe 600 down 0.2% to 387.21
  • German 10Y yield little changed at 2.34%
  • Euro up 0.1% to $0.9719
  • Brent Futures up 0.3% to $94.55/bbl
  • Gold spot up 0.3% to $1,671.92
  • U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 113.12

Top Overnight News from Bloomberg

  • Giorgia Meloni’s euphoria at winning the Italian election is running into reality as the far-right leader struggles to put together a coalition government and the gas-dependent country’s financial outlook darkens
  • Bank of England Governor Andrew Bailey’s blunt warning that fund managers have to cut vulnerable positions before the central bank ends debt purchases is sending a shiver around already fragile global bond markets
  • The UK economy shrank unexpectedly in August for the second time in three months, raising the possibility that the country is now in a recession. The 0.3% drop in output was driven by a sharp decline in manufacturing and a small contraction in services
  • The Bank of England has warned that some UK households may face a strain over debt repayments that is as great as before the 2008 financial crisis, if economic conditions continue to be difficult
  • Bank of England policy maker Jonathan Haskel said one of the key issues ailing the UK economy is lackluster levels of business innovation and productivity
  • The European Union is moving closer to proposing a temporary overhaul of the electricity market by limiting prices of gas used for power generation even as pressure mounts for the bloc to impose a broader cap
  • Germany’s biggest service-sector union is demanding 10.5% pay increases amounting to at least 500 euros ($486) a month for public-sector employees to avoid real losses amid record inflation

A more detailed look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk

Asian stocks were subdued with price action indecisive as the region took its cue from the choppy performance and late selling stateside after BoE Governor Bailey rejected industry calls for an extension to Gilt purchases, although a report from FT overnight suggested the contrary. ASX 200 was rangebound with strength in the real estate and the top-weighted financials sector offsetting the losses in tech, utilities and mining-related stocks, while there were also comments from RBA’s  Assistant Governor Ellis who suggested nominal rates have already passed neutral and that policy was no longer expansionary. Nikkei 225 lacked conviction following the disappointing Machinery Orders data although the downside was contained with Japan reportedly to draw up economic measures before month-end. Hang Seng and Shanghai Comp. were the worst hit despite the jump in loans and financing data in China with markets constrained by lockdown concerns after China's Xi'an announced to suspend onsite classes for some students and shut other venues, while the Shenzhen Metro suspended three stations due to coronavirus.

Top Asian News

  • US permitted at least two non-Chinese chipmakers in China to receive goods and support that are restricted under new US export rules, according to industry sources. It was later reported that SK Hynix (000660 KS) received authorisation from the US Commerce Department to receive equipment for a chip production facility in China for a year without seeking a separate permit from the US, according to Reuters.
  • China will be declared an official threat in a new strategic review of Britain's enemies, according to The Sun.
  • RBA Assistant Governor Ellis said the neutral rate is a guide rail for policy not a destination and that the real neutral rate is uncertain but should be positive even if low which implies a nominal neutral rate of at least 2.5% for Australia, while Ellis added that policy is no longer in an expansionary place, according to Reuters.
  • BoK hiked the base rate by 50bps to 3.00%, as expected and said inflation will remain high in the 5%-6% range for a considerable time. BoK Governor Rhee said board members Joo Sang-Yong and Shin Sung-Hwan dissented at Wednesday's rate decision, while he added that the board's views on the rate hike pace in November differ but added that a majority of board members see the BoK's terminal rate at 3.5%.

European bourses saw a choppy start to the session, but have since titled to the upside as US traders prepare to enter the fray. Sectors are mixed with Consumer Products bolstered by luxury names after LVMH earnings, with Tech following whilst Banks and Real Estate lag. Stateside, US equity futures trade on a firmer footing with the ES back above 3600 as the index futures attempt to claw back some of the lost ground yesterday.

Top European News

  • It was reported that the BoE signalled to lenders that it is prepared to prolong bond purchases with officials privately indicating a flexible approach if market volatility flares up, according to FT. It was later reported that BoE affirmed that its bond-buying scheme will end on Friday 14th October, via Bloomberg.
  • BoE said the bank has made it clear from the outset its temporary and targeted purchases of gilts will end on October 14th, and beyond Oct 14th, a number of facilities are in place to ease liquidity pressures on LDIs.
  • Pensions and Lifetime Savings Association said the announcement by the BoE to purchase index-linked Gilts is a positive additional intervention, while it noted that the concern of pension funds has been that the period of purchasing should not be ended too soon, according to Reuters.
  • UK's trade deal with India is reportedly on the verge of collapse after Indian ministers reacted "furiously" to comments by Home Secretary Braverman, according to The Times.
  • There is growing speculation that UK PM Truss "could ditch yet more aspects of the mini-budget", according to Politico's Courea, adds "Think we’re looking at “deferring” tax cuts and maybe a further windfall tax”". However, Downing St source said that despite claims, there's no delay to April income tax cut, former Chancellor Sunak's corporation tax hike still is cancelled, according to a Sun reporter.
  • ECB's Villeroy said fears of a recession must not derail ECB normalisation and that the current level of inflation requires ECB determination, while he also noted that a short recession is less detrimental than stagflation and said discussion about a 50bps or 75bps hike in October is premature amid volatile markets. Furthermore, Villeroy said the ECB may move more slowly after reaching a neutral rate and the APP unwind could begin earlier than 2024 with partial reinvestments.


  • DXY is softer but off worst levels after testing levels close to 113.00 to the downside.
  • GBP was volatile but currently stands as the outperformer following speculation over the Government ‘ditching’ or ‘deferring’ more of the tax cut proposals.
  • The USD extended its bull run against the JPY to a fresh 2022 and multi-year best beyond prior Japanese intervention levels and 146.00, with little resistance from officials other than the usual verbal interjections

Fixed Income

  • Bunds slipped to a fresh intraday low on Eurex at 135.64 for an 81 tick loss on the day having been 9 ticks above par at one stage.
  • Gilts remain 100+ ticks adrift within extremes spanning 90.90-92.81 vs yesterday’s 92.83 Liffe close.
  • US Treasuries are holding steady before PPI data, 10 year note supply, FOMC minutes and further Fed rhetoric.


  • WTI and Brent front-month futures are flat intraday but off the worst levels seen overnight.
  • NHC said Tropical Storm Karl is expected to strengthen today as it moves slowly over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico.
  • Polish pipeline operator said on Tuesday evening it detected a leak in the Druzhba pipeline; cause is unknown; leak detected in one of two lines, second line is working as normal. Russia's Transfneft said it has received notice from Polish operator PERN about the leak at Druzbha; oil pumping towards Poland continues, according to IFX. Polish top official for energy infrastructure said there are no grounds to believe leak in Druzhba pipeline was sabotage, adds leak was probably caused by accidental damage. Germany State of Brandenburg Economy Minister said there was a pressure drop in Druzhba's main pipeline No.2, according to dpa. Polish pipeline operator PERN said supply to German clients is continuing taking into account technical possibilities; Polish refineries are receiving oil in line with nominations.
  • SGH Macro said the understanding in Beijing is that Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman assured Russia’s President Vladimir Putin that OPEC+ will cooperate to ensure that global crude oil prices do not fall below USD 80/bbl at least until the end of the military conflict between Russia and Ukraine, even if there is a global economic crisis.".
  • Spot gold is modestly firmer as the upside for the Buck remains capped for now, but the yellow metal remains under its 21DMA (USD 1,673.34/oz).
  • LME metals are mixed with copper relatively flat but aluminium is underperforming following a large build in LME warehouse stocks.


  • US President Biden told CNN that he doesn't think Russian President Putin will use a tactical nuclear weapon.
  • US President Biden said the Saudis face consequences after the OPEC+ production cut, according to Bloomberg.
  • Two delegations of US congressmen led by Republican Brad Wenstrup and Democrat Seth Moulton have arrived in Taiwan and will stay until Thursday, according to Sputnik.

US Event Calendar

  • 07:00: Oct. MBA Mortgage Applications -2.0%, prior -14.2%
  • 08:30: Sept. PPI Final Demand MoM, est. 0.2%, prior -0.1%
    • Sept. PPI Final Demand YoY, est. 8.4%, prior 8.7%
    • Sept. PPI Ex Food, Energy, Trade MoM, est. 0.2%, prior 0.2%
    • Sept. PPI Ex Food, Energy, Trade YoY, est. 5.6%, prior 5.6%
    • Sept. PPI Ex Food and Energy YoY, est. 7.3%, prior 7.3%
    • Sept. PPI Ex Food and Energy MoM, est. 0.3%, prior 0.4%
  • 14:00: Sept. FOMC Meeting Minutes

DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap

Have we got 3 days to avert some kind of financial crisis here in the UK? That seemed to be the implicit message from the BoE governor Bailey last night in Washington in what were extraordinary comments that shook global markets after what was slowly turning into a pretty positive session up until the remarks less than 90 minutes before the US close.

His exact words were “My message to the funds involved and all the firms is you’ve got three days left now…. You’ve got to get this done.” He was referring to the fact that the APF purchases are slated to end on Friday and that there won’t be any extension. Whether that’s the case or not the extra actions from BoE this week and the stern words from Bailey hint at some big issues still for UK pension funds which will scare the market. Bailey’s language was also a little scary elsewhere saying that he’d been up all night addressing UK market issues and that recent market volatility went beyond their bank stress tests. I suppose the problem with all of this is that if you want pension funds to sort all their issues out in the next three days, he may have made their job a lot harder with the explicit public comments as the market will be really concerned there's a bigger problem now than they thought beforehand. This is unlikely to help pension funds delever. So we could be in for some major volatility in UK assets for the next few days. The only caveat is that the FT reported at 5am this morning that the BoE have privately communicated to bankers that it would extend the emergency bond buying program if market conditions required it.

The first reaction to Bailey's comments was felt in Sterling which fell -1.35% from the comments to the close (-0.79% on the day overall) landing at $1.097. Overnight it has rebounded (+0.54%) a bit as I type purely on the FT article I mentioned above. 10yr treasury yields spiked +6.6bps into the close after Bailey having been roughly unchanged immediately before the remarks (after volatile intraday moves) and global equities retreated after their own volatile session. Initially the S&P 500 fell -1.23% after the open, hitting intraday lows that were last matched in November 2020, immediately following Pfizer’s positive Covid trial results, before steadily rallying throughout the day to +0.76%, only to reverse course and nose dive into the close, finishing -0.65% lower following Bailey’s comments. The continued bout of volatility and warnings around broader financial stability saw the Vix index of volatility increase +1.2pts to 33.63pts, its highest levels since immediately before June’s financial conditions easing. Big tech stocks led the way down, with the NASDAQ falling -1.10% to hit its lowest level since July 2020. European stocks may have missed the intraday gyrations and the late US sell-off, but ended up much in the same place, with the STOXX 600 (-0.56%) down for a 5th consecutive session

Back to the UK, earlier, the Bank of England announced they were widening the scope of their daily gilt purchases to include index-linked gilts as well. The move followed some astonishing increases in real yields on Monday, which were so big that they surpassed what we saw during the market turmoil following the mini-budget, with the 10yr index-linked gilt yield rising by an incredible +64.1bps. This widening in the BoE’s intervention is now occurring alongside their existing conventional gilt purchases. 10yr Gilts closed +1.0bps, while real 10yr yields fell back -5.6bps. Nevertheless, nominal 30yr yields increased +10.9bps to 4.78%, and that was before Bailey’s comments after the close.

Elsewhere, today we start the shift back towards inflation with today’s PPI release from the US setting the stage for the all-important CPI reading tomorrow, with those prints having led to some of the biggest selloffs we’ve seen this year. There’s little doubt in markets that the Fed are going to go for another 75bps hike in 3 weeks’ time, particularly after last week’s jobs report, but there’s more uncertainty about the subsequent meetings, and any upside inflation surprises today and tomorrow could put any slowdown in rate hikes even further into the distance. Alternatively softer numbers could help encourage a big rally given bearish risk positioning.

We won’t get the producer price reading until 13:30 London time, but ahead of that we did get the New York Fed’s latest Survey of Consumer Expectations for September, which showed a divergent picture on inflation expectations. At the one-year horizon, expectations fell back to 5.4%, which is their lowest in a year, and some further good news for the Fed. But the longer-term data was somewhat less positive, with three-year expectations ticking back up to 2.9% following three consecutive monthly declines, and five-year expectations advanced to 2.2% following four consecutive monthly declines. Clearly that could just be a blip, but well-anchored inflation expectations have regularly been cited as a reason for the Fed not moving even more aggressively, so any signs that expectations are going in the wrong direction again would raise the prospect of yet more tightening ahead.

In the meantime, Fed officials continued to strike a hawkish note in their remarks yesterday, with Cleveland Fed President Mester saying that “the larger risks come from tightening too little and allowing very high inflation to persist and become embedded in the economy”. Recall, there’s been a brewing philosophical divergence on the Committee about the risks of over-tightening given the long and variable lags of monetary policy, which should gather more steam once we get through the last two FOMC meetings in 2022, so it was instructive to hear an official come down so starkly on the other side of the balance of risks debate. That backdrop saw futures price in a 75bps hike for November as more likely than at any point to date so far, with +73.8bps priced in by the close.

Elsewhere among central bankers, we heard from ECB Chief Economist Lane as well yesterday, although he didn’t reveal much in the way of policy conclusions to draw from. One line was that he said “the ECB’s Governing Council is fully aware that further ground needs to be covered in the next several meetings to exit from the prevailing highly accommodative level of policy rates”. So a clear signal that more rate hikes are coming over the meetings ahead. Against that backdrop, sovereign bonds in Europe had oscillated between gains and losses throughout the day, in line with the volatility seen across global markets. But by the close yields had mostly fallen across the continent, with those on 10yr bunds (-4.1bps) and OATs (-3.0bps) both falling back. 10yr BTPs rose +4.2bps as some of the previous day's excitement over possible joint EU issuance to help with the energy crisis faded.

Asian equity markets are sliding again this morning with the Hang Seng (-1.92%) leading losses followed by the Shanghai Composite (-1.22%) and the CSI (-1.19%) as the rising number of Covid-19 cases has prompted Beijing to impose fresh lockdowns and travel restrictions ahead of the 20th Party Congress. Elsewhere, the Nikkei (-0.14%) is slightly weaker with the Kospi (-0.16%) also moving lower as the Bank of Korea (BOK) raised interest rates by a half percentage point to 3%. The statement indicated that it sees upside risks to its August inflation projection for this year of 5.2%, which warrants additional rate hikes. Additionally, it warned of slower growth with the Korean economy expected to grow next year at a slower pace than the August forecast of 2.1%.

Moving ahead, US stock futures are ticking higher with contracts on the S&P 500 (+0.43%) and the NASDAQ 100 (+0.52%) edging higher with US 10yrs -2bps overnight. In FX, the Japanese yen touched a new 24-yr low of 146.23 against the dollar.

Elsewhere yesterday, the IMF released their latest round of economic projections as the IMF/World Bank annual meetings get underway. In terms of the headlines, they left their 2022 global growth forecast unchanged at +3.2%, but their 2023 forecast was downgraded to +2.7% (vs. +2.9% in July). Those reductions were particularly concentrated in the advanced economies, with Germany seeing one of the biggest downgrades as they’re now forecasting a -0.3% contraction for 2023 (vs. +0.8% in July). They also upgraded their global inflation forecasts, and are now projecting that world consumer prices will have risen by +8.8% in 2022 (vs. +8.3% in July) and +6.5% in 2023 (vs. +5.7% in July).

Finally on the data front, the UK unemployment rate fell to 3.5% (vs. 3.6% expected) in the three months to August, which is its lowest level since 1974. In addition, the number of payrolled employees in September was up +69k (vs. +35k expected).

To the day ahead now, and data releases include the US PPI reading for September, along with UK GDP and Euro Area industrial production for August. From central banks, we’ll get the FOMC minutes from the September meeting, and hear from the Fed’s Barr, Kashkari and Bowman, ECB President Lagarde, the ECB’s Knot and De Cos, as well as the BoE’s Pill, Haskel and Mann. Finally, earnings releases include PepsiCo.

Tyler Durden Wed, 10/12/2022 - 08:03

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Escobar: Russia-China Partnership Defangs US Empire

Escobar: Russia-China Partnership Defangs US Empire

Authored by Pepe Escobar,

China’s State Council has released a crucial policy paper…



Escobar: Russia-China Partnership Defangs US Empire

Authored by Pepe Escobar,

China’s State Council has released a crucial policy paper titled 'A Global Community of Shared Future: China’s Proposals and Actions' that should be read as a detailed, comprehensive road map for a peaceful, multipolar future.

That is if the hegemon - of course faithful to its configuration as War Inc. - does not drag the world into the abyss of a hybrid-turned-hot war with incandescent consequences.

In sync with the ever-evolving Russia-China strategic partnership, the white paper notes how “President Xi Jinping first raised the vision of a global community of shared future when addressing the Moscow State Institute of International Relations in 2013.”

That was ten years ago, when the New Silk Roads – or Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) - was launched: that became the overarching foreign policy concept of the Xi era. The Belt and Road Forum next month in Beijing will celebrate the 10th anniversary of BRI, and relaunch a series of BRI projects.

“Community of Shared Future” is a concept virtually ignored across the collective West – and in several cases lost in translation across the East. The white paper’s ambition is to introduce “the theoretical base, practice and development of a global community of shared future.”

The five key points include building partnerships “in which countries treat each other as equals”; a fair and just security environment; “inclusive development”; inter-civilization exchanges; and “an ecosystem that puts Mother Nature and green development first," as Xi detailed at the 2015 UN General Assembly.

The white paper forcefully debunks the “Thucydides Trap” fallacy: “There is no iron law that dictates that a rising power will inevitably seek hegemony. This assumption represents typical hegemonic thinking and is grounded in memories of catastrophic wars between hegemonic powers in the past.”

While criticizing the “zero-sum game” to which “certain countries” still cling to, China completely aligns with the Global South/global majority, as in “the common interests of all peoples around the world. When the world thrives, China thrives, and vice versa.”

Well, that’s not exactly the “rules-based international order” in play.

It’s All About Harmony

When it comes to building a new system of international relations, China prioritizes “extensive consultation” among equals and “the principle of sovereign equality” that “runs through the UN Charter.” History and realpolitik, though, dictate that some countries are more equal than others.

This white paper comes from the political leadership of a civilization-state. Thus it naturally promotes the “increase of inter-civilization exchanges to promote harmony” while elegantly remarking how a “fine traditional culture epitomizes the essence of the Chinese civilization.”

Here we see a delicate blend of Taoism and Confucianism, where harmony – praised as “the core concept of Chinese culture” - is extrapolated to the concept of “harmony within diversity”: and that is exactly the basis for embracing cultural diversity.

In terms of promoting a dialogue of civilizations, these paragraphs are particularly relevant:

“The concept of a global community of shared future reflects the common interests of all civilizations – peace, development, unity, coexistence, and win-win cooperation. A Russian proverb holds, 'Together we can weather the storm.'

"The Swiss-German writer Hermann Hesse proposed, 'Serve not war and destruction, but peace and reconciliation.' A German proverb reads, 'An individual’s effort is addition; a team’s effort is multiplication.' An African proverb states, 'One single pillar is not sufficient to build a house.' An Arabian proverb asserts, 'If you want to walk fast, walk alone; if you want to walk far, walk together.'

"Mexican poet Alfonso Reyes wrote, 'The only way to be profitably national is to be generously universal.' An Indonesian proverb says, 'Sugarcane and lemongrass grow in dense clumps.' A Mongolian proverb concludes, 'Neighbors are connected at heart and share a common destiny.' All the above narratives manifest the profound cultural and intellectual essence of the world.”

BRI Caravan Rolls On

Chinese diplomacy has been very vocal on the need to develop a “new type of economic globalization” and engage in “peaceful development” and true multilateralism.

And that brings us inevitably to the BRI, which the white paper defines as “a vivid example of building a global community of shared future, and a global public good and cooperation platform provided by China to the world.”

Of course, for the hegemon and its collective West vassals, BRI is nothing but a massive debt trap mechanism unleashed by “autocrat China”.

The white paper notes, factually, how “more than three-quarters of countries in the world and over 30 international organizations” had joined the BRI, and refers to the sprawling, ever-expanding connectivity framework of six corridors, six routes, an array of ports, pipelines and cyberspace connectivity, among others via the New Eurasian Land Bridge, the China-Europe Railway Express (a “steel camel fleet”) and the New Land-Sea Trade Corridor crisscrossing Eurasia.

A serious problem may involve China’s Global Development Initiative, whose fundamental aim, according to Beijing, is “to accelerate the implementation of the UN’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.”

Well, this agenda has been designed by the self-described Davos elites and conceptualized way back in 1992 by Rockefeller protégé Maurice Strong. Its inbuilt wet dream is to enforce the Great Reset – complete with a nonsensical zero-carbon green agenda.

Better Listen to Medvedev’s Warning

The hegemon is already preparing the next stages of its hybrid war against China – even as it remains buried deep down into a de facto proxy hot war against Russia in Ukraine.

Russian strategic policy, in essence, completely aligns with the Chinese white paper, proposing a Greater Eurasian Partnership, a concerted drive towards multipolarity, and the primacy of the Global South/global majority in forging a new system of international relations.

But the Straussian neocon psychos in charge of the hegemon’s foreign policy keep raising the stakes. So it’s no wonder that after the recent attack on the HQ of the Black Sea Fleet in Sevastopol, a new National Security Council report leads to an ominous warning by Security Council Deputy Chairman Dmitry Medvedev:

“NATO has turned into an openly fascist bloc similar to Hitler’s Axis, only bigger (...) It looks like Russia is being left with little choice other than a direct conflict with NATO (...) The result would be much heavier losses for humanity than in 1945."

The Russian Ministry of Defense, meanwhile, has revealed that Ukraine has suffered a staggering 83,000 battlefield deaths since the start of the - failed - counteroffensive four months ago.

And Defense Minister Shoigu all but gave away the game in terms of the long-term strategy, when he said, “the consistent implementation of measures and activity plans until 2025 will allow us to achieve our goals."

So the SMO will not be rounded up before 2025 – incidentally, much later than the next US presidential election. After all, Moscow’s ultimate aim is de-NATOization.

Faced with a cosmic NATO humiliation on the battlefield, the Biden combo has no way out: even if it declared a unilateral ceasefire to re-weaponize Kiev’s forces for a new counteroffensive in the spring/summer of 2024, the war would keep rumbling on all the way to the presidential election.

There’s absolutely no way some sharp intellect in the Beltway would read the Chinese white paper and be “infected” by the concept of harmony. Under the yoke of Straussian neocon psychos, there are zero prospects for a détente with Russia – not to mention Russia-China.

Both the Chinese and Russian leaderships know quite well how the Ray McGovern-defined MICIMATT (military-industrial-congressional-intelligence-media-academia-think tank complex) works.

The kinetic aspect of MICIMATT is all about protection of the global interests of big US banks, investment/hedge funds and multinational corporations. It’s not a coincidence that MICIMATT monster Lockheed-Martin is mostly owned by Vanguard, BlackRock and State Street. NATO is essentially a mafia protection racket controlled by the US and the UK that has nothing to do with “defending” Europe from the “Russian threat."

The actual MICIMATT and its NATO extension’s wet dream is to weaken and dismember Russia to control its immense natural resources.

War Against the New 'Axis of Evil'

NATO’s incoming graphic humiliation in Ukraine is now compounded with the inexorable rise of BRICS 11 – which embodies a lethal threat to the hegemon’s geoeconomics. There’s next to nothing the MICIMATT can do about that short of nuclear war – except turbo-charging multiple instances of Hybrid War, color revolutions and assorted divide-and-rule schemes. What’s at stake is no less than a complete implosion of neoliberalism.

The Russia-China strategic partnership of true sovereigns has been coordinating full-time.

Strategic patience is the norm. The white paper reveals the magnanimous facet of the number one economy in the world by PPP: that’s China’s response to the infantile notion of “de-risking”.

China is “de-risking” geopolitically when it comes to not falling for serial provocations by the Hegemon, while Russia exercises Taoist-style control to not risk a kinetic war.

Still, what Medvedev just said carries the implication that the hegemon on desperation row could even be tempted to launch WWIII against, in fact, a new “axis of evil” of three BRICS nations – Russia, China and Iran.

Secretary of the [Russian] National Security Council Nikolai Patrushev could not have been more crystal clear:

“In its attempts to maintain its dominance, the West itself destroyed the tools that worked better for it than the military machine. These are freedom of movement of goods and services, transport and logistics corridors, a unified system of payments, global division of labor and value chains. As a result, Westerners are shutting themselves off from the rest of the world at a rapid pace.”

If only they could join the community of shared future – hopefully on a later, non-nuclear, date.

Tyler Durden Sat, 09/30/2023 - 23:30

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“More Deceit”: Gaetz Rages Over McCarthy-Ukraine Side Deal To Pass Stopgap

"More Deceit": Gaetz Rages Over McCarthy-Ukraine Side Deal To Pass Stopgap

Update (2155ET): Following the Senate’s passage of the Continuing…



"More Deceit": Gaetz Rages Over McCarthy-Ukraine Side Deal To Pass Stopgap

Update (2155ET): Following the Senate's passage of the Continuing Resolution, Rep. Matt Gaetz took to Twitter, where he was enraged over a side deal made between Speaker Kevin McCarthy and the Democrats for Ukraine funding, which Gaetz says he "didn't tell House Republicans" about until after the vote. 

Gaetz was responding to Punchbowl News' Jake Sherman, who related a message from House Democratic leadership.

"When the House returns, we expect Speaker McCarthy to advance a bill to the House Floor for an up-or-down vote that supports Ukraine, consistent with his commitment to making sure that Vladimir Putin, Russia and authoritarianism are defeated. We must stand with the Ukrainian people until victory is won."

Nine Senate Republicans voted against the bill; Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), Ted Cruz (R-Texas), Bill Hagerty (R-Tenn.), Mike Lee (R-Utah), Roger Marshall (R-Kan.), Rand Paul (R-Ky.), Eric Schmitt (R-Mo.) and J.D Vance (R-Ohio).

*  *  *

Update (2109ET):  The Senate has voted 88-9 to pass the House's Continuing Resolution stopgap funding bill, which stripped out funds for Ukraine, includes $16 billion for disaster relief, and will keep the US government running for another 45 days.

Among the Senate "Yea" votes was Michael Bennet (D-CO), who was absolutely flipping his lid over the lack of Ukraine funding earlier in the day.

The bill, which passed the House earlier in the day by a bipartisan vote of 335-91, was passed with just three hours to go before a shutdown.

Just before the vote, Sen. Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) vowed to keep fighting for more US taxpayer dollars for Ukraine, saying that he and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) have "agreed to continue fighting for more economic and security aid for Ukraine."

"We support Ukraine’s efforts to defend its sovereignty against Putin’s aggression," said Schumer - to which McConnell said he's "confident" that the Senate can pass more "urgent assistance to Ukraine later this year. But let's be clear," that the "alternative," a shutdown, "would not just pause our progress on these important priorities, it would actually set them back."

*  *  *

Update (1755ET): After an afternoon of theatrics from Rep. Jamal Bowman (D-NY), it appears that the stopgap legislation to keep the government running through November 17 will now pass at the 11th hour.

According to the Wall Street Journal, the bill to keep the government funded past 12:01 Sunday includes $16 billion in disaster relief, but does not include Ukraine funds.

The House voted 335-91 for the funding measure, which includes $16 billion in disaster relief but omits aid for Ukraine. It also excludes border-security measures sought by Republicans. The margin exceeded the two-thirds majority needed to clear the bill through the House, which considered the legislation under special procedures requiring a supermajority of votes. All but one Democrat voted in favor of the measure, while nearly half of Republicans voted against it. -WSJ

While White House officials say President Biden supports the measure, the Senate has reportedly been lax in quickly taking up the measure late Saturday, raising the possibility of further malarkey.


*  *  *

(Update 1655ET): So let's get this straight. In the home stretch of negotiations over the House's GOP stopgap bill - while Democrats were actively trying to stall the vote so they could actually read it - a widely reported phenomenon, Rep. Jamal Bowman (D-NY) pulls the fire extinguisher.

His excuse is that he wasn't actually trying to stall the the vote, and that he's essentially an idiot...

"Congressman Bowman did not realize he would trigger a building alarm as he was rushing to make an urgent vote. The Congressman regrets any confusion," said a spokesperson.

Yes. Because this happens all the time.

MSNBC breathlessly repeats the Simple Jack defense.

House Speaker Kevin McCarthy capitalized on the incident, comparing Bowman to a January 6th insurrectionist.

As we noted below... Bowman used to be a public school principal before he was elected to Congress, who rallied against standardized testing, at a private school he founded that has a 27% literacy rate, so... maybe?

Then again, he would be no stranger to fire drills, no?

*  *  *

House before the House finally approved a 'clean' stopgap funding bill to avert a government shutdown (which has since been sent to the Senate for consideration before the midnight funding deadline), Socialist Rep. Jamaal Bowman (D-NY) was caught pulling the fire alarm in a House office building Saturday in order to try and delay a vote on ta House GOP stopgap spending bill.

The incident in the Cannon Building was caught on camera and confirmed by several witnesses, Politico reports.

"This is the United States Congress, not a New York City high school. To pull the fire alarm to disrupt proceedings when we are trying to draft legislation to AVERT A SHUTDOWN is pathetic…even for members of the socialist squad," Staten Island GOP Rep. Nicole Malliotakis wrote on X, formerly Twitter.

"Rep Jamaal Bowman pulled a fire alarm in Cannon this morning," House Administration Committee Chairman Bryan Steil wrote on X. "An investigation into why it was pulled is underway."

According to Bowman spox Emma Simon, "Congressman Bowman did not realize he would trigger a building alarm as he was rushing to make an urgent vote. The Congressman regrets any confusion."

In other words, he's claiming to be too stupid to have known what he did - and don't believe your lying eyes!

Granted, Bowman used to be a public school principal before he was elected to Congress, who rallied against standardized testing, at a private school he founded that has a 27% literacy rate, so...

Needless to say, the memes are already flying.


Meanwhile, the House cleared the 'clean' stopgap bill without funding for Ukraine or the border, by a vote of 335-91. One Democrat and 90 Republicans voted against the measure.

*  *  *

Update: (1335ET): With a government shutdown just hours away, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy has turned to Democrats for help passing a temporary bill, after House Freedom Caucus members dug their heels in over no funds for Ukraine.

"What I am asking, Republicans and Democrats alike, put your partisanship away," said McCarthy. "Focus on the American public."

McCarthy needs a two-thirds majority to pass their Continuing Resolution (CR), which would require a significant number of Democrats - who have strongly supported more Ukraine aid - to cross the aisle.

The House GOP bill would be a 'clean' Continuing Resolution, which won't include Ukraine funding or border assistance.

"We will put a clean funding stopgap on the floor to keep government open for 45 days for the House and Senate to get their work done," said McCarthy following a meeting. "We will also, knowing what had transpired through the summer, the disasters in Florida, the horrendous fire in Hawaii, and also the disasters in California and Vermont. We will put the supplemental portion that the president asked for in disaster there too."

"Keeping the government open while we continue to do our work to end the wasteful spending and the wokeism and most important, secure our border," McCarthy said.

If the bill does not pass, Republicans plan to bring up several measures to mitigate the effects of a government shutdown, multiple members said. 

Those include bills to continue paying service members and extending authorization of the Federal Aviation Administration and National Flood Insurance Program, both of which are also set to expire at midnight unless Congress takes action. Republicans are also examining measures to continue pay for border patrol agents. -The Hill

The Democrats, meanwhile, have been using parliamentary tactics to slow down the vote so they can more carefully read the GOP proposal.

Rep. Matt Gaetz (R-FL), one of the key holdouts in the House, called McCarthy's bipartisan appeal "disappointing," and said that McCarthy's speakership is "on tenuous ground."

When asked what his next move will be, Gaetz said "I guess we'll have to see how the vote goes."

What's next?

According to Goldman, there's a 90% probability of a shutdown before the Oct. 1 deadline.

That said, there will be three upcoming catalysts in the next few weeks that may result in passage.

1) All members of the US military are due to be paid on Oct. 13, and a missed pay date would have serious political ramifications; there is a good chance the House will vote to reopen before or shortly after that date; 

2) A few House Republicans have said they might bring a “motion to vacate” that would remove McCarthy as Speaker unless a majority of the House supports him. Whatever the outcome of such a vote, getting past it could set the stage for a reopening; 

3) There are procedural moves (a “discharge petition” is the most frequently discussed) that Democrats can make to pass an extension of spending authority in the House over Speaker McCarthy’s objections. However, this would require support from at least 5 House Republicans (assuming that all Democrats sign on). This will not help avoid a shutdown, but could come into play over the next two weeks, as political pressure to reopen grows (particularly when combined with the first point on military pay). 

In light of the above, Goldman doesn't expect this to last more than 2-3 weeks, and that the Oct. 13 military pay date will become a focal point in the timeline.

*  *  *

Update (2157ET): It looks like the Senate isn't willing to strip Ukraine funds from the continuing resolution. In a Friday night tweet, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) said that the "misguided Senate bill has no path forward and is dead on arrival."

Meanwhile, according to Punchbowl News' Jake Sherman and Josh Bresnahan, McCarthy is floating a CR that would last until Nov. 17 at FY2023 funding levels, which would not include border funds or Ukraine funding.

*  *  *

In an 11th hour Hail Mary in the hopes of averting a government shutdown, House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-CA) announced that the only way the House will pass a Continuing Resolution (CR) to fund the government through October is to drop Ukraine funding.

"I think if we had a clean one without Ukraine on it, we could probably be able to move that through," McCarthy told CNN's Manu Raju.

The comment comes hours after McCarthy lost a game of chicken with the House Freedom Caucus, failing to pass a CR which left McCarthy will few options to try and avert a shutdown in less than 36 hours. McCarthy was hoping that the House bill's border security provisions would win over enough holdouts to pass.

Meanwhile, the White House slammed the failed bill over the 'elimination of 12,000 FBI agents,' and 'almost 1,000 ATF agents.'

Of note, House Republicans on Thursday narrowly passed the annual defense spending bill, but only after they removed $300 million in Ukraine aid from the legislation (which then cleared in a separate vote because a bunch of Democrats then voted).

Speaker Kevin McCarthy, who failed twice last week to advance the bill to the floor, finally locked down enough Republican votes to pass the bill after the House stripped $300 million to arm Ukraine from the text.

The separate bill carved out to allocate those funds for Kyiv passed Thursday in a 311-117 blowout bipartisan vote. Republicans had won a close procedural vote earlier in the day to separate the Ukraine money from the Pentagon bill, a move meant to flip a handful of GOP holdouts. -Politico

Democrats framed the optics as Kremlin-friendly, with House Armed Services ranking Democrat Adam Smith saying "The Russians are good at propaganda... It will be played as America backing off of its commitment for Ukraine."

Republicans responded that by carving Ukraine out of the defense bill, it allows opponents of either measure (Ukraine aid or the defense bill) to voice their opinions on each independently.

"Why don’t we make sure this gets through? I mean, I’m just mystified that this is somehow a problem," said House Rules Chair Tom Cole (R-OK), according to Politico. "We guarantee you something you want is going to pass the House and you’re upset about it."

And now, McCarthy says there's no way to avert a government shutdown unless the House, and the Senate, agree to nix Ukraine aid from the 30-day stopgap.

Fire and Brimstone...

On Friday, White House top economic adviser Lael Brainard said that a shutdown would pose an "unnecessary risk" to what he described as a resilient economy with moderating inflation.

Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen then chimed in, warning that all of Bidenomics could be negatively impacted.

"The failure of House Republicans to act responsibly would hurt American families and cause economic headwinds that could undermine the progress we’re making," Yellen said from Port of Savannah, Georgia, adding "A shutdown would impact many key government functions from loans to farmers and small businesses, to food and workplace safety inspections, to Head Start programs for children.

"And it could delay major infrastructure improvements."

Goldman has predicted that a shutdown will last 2-3 weeks, and that a 'quick reopening looks unlikely as political positions become more deeply entrenched.' Instead, as political pressure to reopen the government builds, pay dates for active-duty military (Oct. 13 and Nov. 1) will become key dates to pay attention to.

In addition, they think a shutdown could subtract 0.2pp from Q4 GDP growth for each week it lasts (adding the same to 1Q2024, assuming it's over by then).

What's more, all data releases from federal agencies would be postponed until after the government reopens.

More via Goldman:

What are the odds the government shuts down?

A shutdown this year has looked likely for several months, and we now think the odds have risen to 90%. The most likely scenario in our view is that funding will lapse after Sep. 30, leading to a shutdown starting Oct. 1. That said, a short-term extension cannot be entirely ruled out. In the event that Congress avoids a shutdown starting Oct. 1, we would still expect a shutdown at some point later in Q4.

While there is likely sufficient support in both chambers of Congress to pass a short-term extension of funding—this is known as a “continuing resolution” (CR)—that is “clean” with no other provisions attached, the majority of that support would come from Democrats. The Senate is considering a CR that includes aid for disaster relief and Ukraine. House Republican leaders are under political pressure to pass a CR that includes Republican policy priorities that can pass with mainly or exclusively Republican support. At the moment, neither chamber looks likely to pass the other chamber's CR.

The outlook seemed bleak ahead of the debt limit deadline earlier this year, but Congress resolved it in time; why shouldn’t we expect a last-minute deal once again?

The smaller economic hit from a shutdown puts less pressure on Republican leaders to override the objections of some in their party to reach a deal. Ahead of the debt limit deadline earlier this year, Republican leaders reached a deal over the objections of some in their party because the potential hit to the economy from an impasse would have been unpredictable and severe, and even lawmakers most strongly opposed to a compromise agreed that the debt limit must be raised. By contrast, the economic hit from a shutdown would be smaller and more predictable, as there have already been two protracted shutdowns over the last decade. While most lawmakers on both sides of the aisle would prefer to avoid a shutdown, both sides appear more willing to take the chance it occurs.

*  *  *

Stay tuned...

Tyler Durden Sat, 09/30/2023 - 17:57

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Spread & Containment

A Climate Of Fear

A Climate Of Fear

Authored by James Gorrie via The Epoch Times,

The medical, media, and political elites’ focus has shifted from facts…



A Climate Of Fear

Authored by James Gorrie via The Epoch Times,

The medical, media, and political elites’ focus has shifted from facts to fomenting and magnifying fear.

In Franklin D. Roosevelt’s first inaugural address in 1933, the new president told a nation in the depths of the Great Depression that “the only thing we have to fear is fear itself.”

Those words were true and rightfully spoken at that time. Roosevelt knew that fear is a powerful emotion that limits our ability to reason, act wisely, and work together. It’s also an emotion that’s contagious and not easily diminished or dissipated.

The Power of Fear to Fragment Society

Unfortunately, Roosevelt’s words are even more applicable today.

On a personal level, decisions made under the emotional duress of fear are rarely the best ones and often the worst. Fear can bring out the best in us, but can often bring out the worst. That’s more likely to occur the more fragmented a society becomes. Fear among different groups of people creates an us-versus-them context in the minds of individuals, or even an “every-man-for-himself” attitude, which pits one group against another or even each of us against each other.

Now elevate that sense of fear to the level of the national electorate. A people or a nation that's paralyzed with fear makes rash decisions based on their fears of what could happen, not necessarily what the current situation truly is. When that happens, a society can quickly degenerate, where our base instincts determine our behavior in a law-of-the-jungle social environment.

Roosevelt knew this, as do our leaders today. The difference is that today, rather than seeking to dispel fear, our political and media elites create it, expand it, and revel in it. Rather than promote hope and strength of character in us, in a Roosevelt- or even a Reagan-like fashion, they traffic in fear and its fellow traveler social division in order to fragment our society.

It’s the old but effective divide-and-conquer strategy, and sadly, it works far too well. The mechanism for divide and conquer is the constant drumbeat of the Big Lie, which is also a tried and true method for controlling society. It was first practiced and perfected by Joseph Goebbels in Nazi Germany using the mass media, but has been successfully used by the USSR and every other communist and dictatorial regime in the world since the 1930s.

Social Media Is Magnitudes More Powerful Than Legacy Media

The difference today is the massive and pervasive presence of social media. Its reach and social saturation throughout society are magnitudes greater than have ever been possible before. What’s more, our political and media elites create and exaggerate fear without even mentioning the word. “Fear” is driven into our collective psyches under the guise of our government keeping us “safe,” while demonizing anyone who challenges that narrative.

The repetition by the media and the pharmaceutical industry of how to stay safe from COVID-19 always involves more drugs and less freedom. That’s by design. The elites that run society know that once enough of our friends, neighbors, coworkers, and others with whom we interact become more fearful than rational, they’re easily manipulated and divided into confrontational groups.

Does that sound like a conspiracy theory?

Yes, it probably does, but it’s also how the Stasi, the East German security agency, turned virtually every neighbor into an informant. The result was that people were fearful of doing anything that could be construed as being against the communist East German government. In light of what we’ve been through the last three years—and what looks to be on the horizon—the conspiracy theory accusation has lost its sting.

From Conspiracy Theory to Fact

Recall, for example, how those who received the COVID-19 vaccine turned against those who remained unvaccinated. The contrast and social division couldn’t have been clearer or more deliberate. Vaccinated people were characterized by the media and government agency spokespeople as selfless, smarter, and better human beings than those who refused the vaccine.

On the flip side, the “anti-vaxxers,” as they came to be called, were publicly derided by the medical, pharmaceutical, media, and government elites. They were accused of being low-intelligence conspiracy theory nuts who wouldn’t or couldn’t “follow the science,” even when they followed the science from experts such as Robert Malone, one of the inventors of the mRNA technology, and other medical doctors in Europe and Asia, including former Pfizer Vice President Dr. Michael Yeadon, all of whom were de-platformed from mainstream media and social media.

In fact, any “alternative” remedy to the experimental and highly dangerous mRNA vaccines, such as ivermectin, was summarily dismissed, even though nations that used ivermectin had the lowest mortality rates. As noted above, many media personalities and even medical experts with contrary opinions were silenced, shamed, and shunted into professional oblivion, being substituted by compliant replacements. That practice continues to this day, with Russell Brand being the latest example of being de-monetized by YouTube.

In light of vaccine injuries and deaths, and the staggering profits that vaccines have delivered to the pharmaceutical industry, the number of people who believe the mainstream media, the government, and in the vaccines, is much smaller today than three years ago.

Conspiracy theory narratives have become conspiracy facts.

The Endgame of Fear

So, what’s the endgame of promoting and enforcing a climate of fear throughout society?

It’s simple. Fearful people are far more compliant and, therefore, are easily controlled, pacified, monitored, and dehumanized. Next thing you know, we’ll all be eating bugs and liking it.

The antidote to fear, of course, is freedom and access to real and contrary information so that each person can make up his or her own mind. The encouragement, enablement, and empowerment of private individuals to exercise informed judgment about their health and their livelihoods are also part of the solution. A vibrant, thinking, and active society of informed individuals isn't nearly as vulnerable to the polarizing climate of fear our elites are foisting upon us.

In short, to live in fear is to live in bondage.

Tyler Durden Sat, 09/30/2023 - 20:50

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