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Houston developer eyes 850K-SF of new warehouses near Alliance Airport

The company is already working on 1.8 million square feet of additional warehouse projects in North Texas......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsMay 14th, 2021

Before They Were An Inconvenience, But Now The Shortages Are Really Beginning To Sting

Before They Were An Inconvenience, But Now The Shortages Are Really Beginning To Sting Authored by Michael Snyder via TheMostImportantNews.com, Have you noticed that store shelves are starting to get emptier and emptier?  During the panic shopping that was sparked by the start of the COVID pandemic in 2020, there were very intense shortages of certain items, but those shortages did not last very long at all.  But now there are widespread shortages in just about every sector of our economy, and they are starting to become quite painful.  Unfortunately, we are being told to expect the shortages to intensify as we head into the holiday season.  That is extremely alarming, because in many areas the shortages are already quite severe. I had been away from the news for a couple of days, and when I came back there were lots more stories about our ongoing shortages.  For example, the following comes from an excellent piece by Matt Stoller… There are shortages in everything from ocean shipping containers to chlorine tablets to railroad capacity to black pipe (the piping that houses wires inside buildings) to spicy chicken breasts to specialized plastic bags necessary for making vaccines. Moreover, prices for all sorts of items, from housing to food, are changing in weird ways. Beef, for instance, is at near record highs for consumers, but cattle ranchers are getting paid much less than they used to for their cows. In my entire life, I have never seen anything like this. Even the Federal Reserve is admitting that we have a major problem at this point.  In fact, in the latest Beige Book the Fed referred to the shortages a whopping 80 times. In certain parts of the country, these shortages are really beginning to sting.  A reader just emailed me about what is going on in his section of Connecticut, and he said that I could share this with all of you… I am just a regular guy in Connecticut, who has been watching things very closely, especially from a Biblical perspective. I wanted to quickly share with you an experience my wife and I had about two weeks ago at a medium-size, family run grocery store near Waterbury, CT. Seemingly overnight, we noticed there were little yellow signs on the shelves, where certain SKUs used to be. Not entire lines, but individual SKUs. For example, a flavor of oatmeal, certain cereals, etc. The signs said something to the effect of: “This item is no longer available due to supply chain constraints”. I would say there were a few hundred signs in total throughout the store. It wasn’t until we got to the juice/water aisle that we noticed the larger problem: there was no Gatorade (?) and no bottled water (gallon jugs). I have befriended the manager over the years, so I asked him where the water is, and he told me “…they only will give us so many bottles”. I asked who ‘they’ is, and he said the manufacturer: they were being rationed. As he said this, a truck driver happened to walk by and joined in on the conversation. He told us that he just got back from Maine, after a three-day trip- a trip that normally takes him a few hours. He said he, and all of the other truck drivers, sit at the warehouses for days, waiting for their trucks to be filled. To be clear, I asked him how long it normally takes, and he said a few hours at the most. On our way out, I remembered that we needed dog food, so we went to the pet aisle, and there was no cat litter, and no dog food, save a few little bags of the cheapest stuff. All of the things Steve Quayle has been saying about food and water shortages suddenly became reality. I always believed him, but now I was seeing it, at the very local level. We then decided to go to PetSmart to get the dog food. Empty. The entire dog food shelf was empty except for a few bags! Are similar things happening in your part of the country? If so, please feel free to email me and let me know. We need to share intel with one another, because the mainstream media is not telling us the truth. Of course the shortages would not be as severe if we could actually unload all of the container ships that are backlogged at our ports.  Right now, dozens of container ships are sitting along the west coast waiting to be unloaded… The number of container ships at anchor or drifting in San Pedro Bay off the ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach has blown through all previous records. The latest peak: There were an all-time-high 73 container ships in the queue in San Pedro Bay on Sunday, according to the Marine Exchange of Southern California (the tally inched back to 69 on Tuesday). Of the ships offshore Sunday, 36 were forced to drift because anchorages were full. Theoretically, the numbers — already surreally high — could go even higher than this. While designated anchorages are limited, the space for ships to safely drift offshore is not. This is the same problem that I talked about the other day. At one time we had more able-bodied workers than we knew what to do with, but now there is an extreme shortage of workers all over the globe. Sadly, it has gotten to a point where we don’t even have enough people to drive our kids to school… School districts around the country are struggling to fill thousands of bus driver positions as worker shortages lead to late arrivals and last-minute scrambles to bring retired workers back onto payrolls. The shortages are so bad in some places that districts are taking extraordinary steps to get kids to school as students return to in-person classes this fall. Philadelphia’s school district will pay families $300 a month, or $3,000 for the year, to opt out of transportation services and get their kids to school on their own. Albemarle County Public Schools in Virginia is offering a $2,500 bonus to new drivers — $100 more than the school district in the county seat, Charlottesville, is offering. This is the worst labor shortage that the U.S. has ever faced, and it just keeps getting worse. So where did all the people go? Without enough able-bodied workers, our economy is experiencing a whole host of difficulties right now.  And when you consider everything else that has been going on, it shouldn’t be a surprise that Joe Biden’s approval rating just sunk to a new record low… Eight months after President Joe Biden’s inauguration, his job approval rating has fallen six percentage points to 43%, the lowest of his presidency. For the first time, a majority, 53%, now disapproves of Biden’s performance. These findings are from a Sept. 1-17 Gallup poll that was conducted after the U.S. military evacuated more than 120,000 people from Afghanistan. The United States’ exit from the nation’s longest war was marred by the Taliban’s quick takeover of most of the country and a suicide bombing at the airport in Kabul, which killed 13 U.S. service members. Over the same period, COVID-19 infection rates, nationally, were surging, leading to hospital overflows in some regions. And there are some parts of the nation where his approval rating is absolutely disastrous.  Just check out the latest numbers from Iowa… Just 31% of Iowans approved of how Joe Biden is handling his duties as president while a whopping 62% disapprove. Biden’s disapproval number is below the lowest ever measured by ace pollster J. Ann Selzer for former presidents Donald Trump (35%) and Barack Obama (36%). “This is a bad poll for Joe Biden, and it’s playing out in everything that he touches right now,” Selzer told the Des Moines Register. Less than a year ago, a lot of Americans were viewing Biden as some sort of a “savior” figure. That didn’t exactly work out, did it? Many of us have been warning that shortages and high levels of inflation were coming for a very long time, but of course most of the population is not interested in such warnings. They just want to be told that everything is going to be okay. But the truth is that everything is not going to be okay, and the pain that we have experienced so far is just the beginning. *  *  * It is finally here! Michael’s new book entitled “7 Year Apocalypse” is now available in paperback and for the Kindle on Amazon. Tyler Durden Fri, 09/24/2021 - 15:20.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeSep 24th, 2021

NATO is still living with the consequences of a historic decision it made hours after 9/11

After 20 years of fighting in Afghanistan, NATO members face hard questions about their commitment to the alliance. NATO Secretary General Lord George Robertson speaks to reporters after a meeting of NATO's Permanent Council, in Brussels, October 8, 2001. OLIVIER HOSLET/BELGA/AFP via Getty Images NATO's collective-defense provision, Article 5, is the alliance's backbone. Article 5 has only been invoked once, after the September 11 attacks, which led the alliance into Afghanistan. After 20 years of fighting there, NATO members face hard questions about their commitment to the alliance. See more stories on Insider's business page. A few weeks after the September 11 attacks, NATO made a decision that would shape its future for the next two decades when it invoked its most important weapon: Article 5.Article 5, NATO's collective-defense provision, is the alliance's backbone. According to it, an attack against one NATO member is an attack against all.The article was included in the Washington Treaty, NATO's founding document, to deter the Soviet Union amid the emerging Cold War. The idea was, essentially, that if the Soviet Union attacked a European NATO member the US would intervene on its behalf.However, the US was wary of an automatic military commitment. So, despite pressure from European allies, the article did not specify the type of assistance the members would offer to the attacked party. This would play out in unforeseen ways in the future. President George W. Bush and Robertson at the White House, October 10, 2001. TIM SLOAN/AFP via Getty Images The article was never invoked during the Cold War. The first and so far only time it was invoked was not to defend a small NATO member from Soviet encroachment but the muscle of the alliance, the US itself, from Middle Eastern terrorists.The day after the September 11 attacks, most NATO countries called for the invocation of Article 5. This did not immediately happen since the origin of the attacks had yet to be determined to the satisfaction of some members.It took until October 2, 2001 - when then-NATO Secretary General Lord George Robertson announced that the attacks had indeed been directed from abroad - for Article 5 to be invoked.This was a watershed moment for the alliance. Failure to invoke Article 5 would have rendered NATO obsolete. Instead, the alliance, which had struggled to find its raison d'être following the collapse of the Soviet Union, was propelled into Afghanistan and the fight against terrorism.NATO's most important mission Members of France's 13th Paratrooper Dragoon Regiment during training at a military airport in eastern France, October 9, 2001. DAMIEN MEYER/AFP via Getty Images A number of NATO allies were involved in the war from the very beginning.The UK participated in the first airstrikes against Taliban and Al Qaeda targets. German and British special-operations units took part in the Battle of Tora Bora. A number of NATO countries contributed personnel, aircraft, and logistical support during 2002's Operation Anaconda, the successful mission to rout out Al Qaeda from Afghanistan's Shahi Kot valley.After dismantling the Taliban and Al Qaeda networks in Afghanistan, NATO's role there only grew.In 2003, at the request of the UN and the Afghan government, NATO took charge of the International Security Assistance Force. This was a landmark moment for the alliance.ISAF would be NATO's first deployment outside of Europe and North America. All NATO members would contribute personnel to ISAF - some contributed more per capita than the US.Eventually, the ISAF mandate would expand from securing Kabul to the whole country. This nominally transferred control of the war to NATO.The war exposes NATO's weaknesses A man with a sign reading "War is Murder-War is Terror" outside the German parliament as it debates sending troops to Afghanistan, November 16, 2001. Sean Gallup/Getty Images Assuming control of such a high-stakes mission provided significant operational and organizational experience to NATO. However, as the war's toll increased, weaknesses within the alliance were exposed.Participation in the war in Afghanistan had been a contentious issue in many European countries from the beginning.In some, like Spain, parliamentary approval had not been obtained to dispatch troops to Afghanistan. In others, like Germany and Italy, the deployed troops were limited by legal constraints, which in some cases prevented them from actually fighting the Taliban.Most NATO members had not fought a war in decades, so even limited combat casualties caused significant backlash at home. The 2004 Madrid train bombings and the 2005 London bombings - which brought Islamist terror to Europe in two of the continent's worst attacks in decades - further increased the war's unpopularity.As a result, many NATO members only contributed a few support troops and tried to sidle away from combat operations and troubled areas. France even withdrew its combat forces in 2012. The lack of specificity in Article 5 meant members could abide by their NATO commitment without totally participating in the war effort.In 2015, ISAF became the Resolute Support Mission. A non-combat mission, RSM significantly scaled down the number of NATO troops in Afghanistan as it focused on supporting and advising Afghan security forces.At its peak in 2019, the RSM fielded 17,000 troops, half of whom came from America's allies. Nevertheless, many countries' troop contributions were in the double or even single digits, highlighting NATO's participation problems.The few thousand non-US NATO troops still involved in Afghanistan in 2021 followed the US out of the country, evacuating Kabul in late August.A warning sign American bombs are dropped on an Al Qaeda position in Tora Bora, Afghanistan, December 15, 2001. Robert Nickelsberg/Getty Images The alliance emerges from Afghanistan with a mixed record.On the one hand, it undertook its largest mission ever and the first outside its normal area of operations, learning valuable lessons about organization and interoperability that will be useful for future deployments.On the other hand, the intractable problem at the alliance's core was exposed: the near-impossibility of getting all 30 members to agree on and commit to military and political priorities.To apply those lessons and stay relevant, the alliance will need to ensure that alignment.As NATO Secretary General Jens Stoltenberg wrote on the 20th anniversary of the September 11 attacks, "Afghanistan will not be the last crisis for which North America and Europe need to act together through NATO."Constantine Atlamazoglou works on transatlantic and European security. He holds a Master's degree on security studies and European affairs from the Fletcher School of Law and Diplomacy.Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 23rd, 2021

Rebound Fails as Investors Await Fed Statement

Rebound Fails as Investors Await Fed Statement Stocks made a valiant effort to recover some of yesterday’s sharp losses, but the market could only manage a mixed session on Tuesday as investors wait to hear what the Fed has to say. The Dow soared more than 300 points at it best today, but the index ultimately slipped 0.15% (or about 50 points) to 33,919.84. The S&P took the same rollercoaster ride and finished lower by 0.08% to 4354.19. The NASDAQ found a way to gain 0.22% (or about 32 points) to 14,746.40. Stocks are returning from one of their worst sessions of the year, as each of the indices plunged 1.7% or more on Monday (the NASDAQ was down by as much as 2.2%). Investors are just a bundle of nerves right now with potential problems here at home and overseas. Not only do we have to worry about China’s largest property developer, Evergrande, potentially defaulting later this week; but we also have to keep our eyes on Washington to see if they can stave off a government shutdown by raising the debt ceiling. Of course, the biggest and most immediate concern of investors is the Fed meeting, which began today and will conclude tomorrow with a statement and remarks from Chair Jerome Powell in the afternoon. The market wants to know when the Fed will begin scaling back on the monthly asset purchases. Investors have come to terms with such tapering, but are wondering if the delta variant has delayed the beginning of the process. There shouldn’t be anything new on rates, but you can bet that everyone will be paying close attention to any hints in the dot plot. Needless to say, this announcement has the potential to be a market mover and explains why stocks couldn’t hold onto early gains today with such a big question mark looming over tomorrow. Today's Portfolio Highlights: Surprise Trader: We're in between earnings seasons at the moment, but Dave is still making moves when he can. On Tuesday, the editor added membership warehouse giant Costco (COST), which is a Zacks Rank #2 (Buy) that has beaten the Zacks Consensus Estimate in three of the past four quarters. It surprised by a little over 20% last time and has a positive Earnings ESP heading into the next report after the bell on Thursday. Dave added COST with a 12.5% allocation, while also selling half of BJs Wholesale (BJ) for 10.6% in a little over a month and all of Restoration Hardware (RH) after mostly sideways action. Read the full write-up for more.   Stocks Under $10: Sometimes a disciplined investor needs to make tough decisions. For example, Brian still likes GT Biopharma (GTBP) and Freightcar America (RAIL), but he dumped both names on Tuesday because they are “beyond the point of no return”. The editor quickly filled these two spots by adding AXT Inc. (AXTI) and VirTra (VTSI), which are both Zacks Rank #2s (Buys) that have beaten the Zacks Consensus Estimate over the past four quarters. Brian also likes their improving margins. AXTI is a chip stock with a very attractive valuation, especially considering the topline growth of 52% in its most recent quarter. VTSI is a “virtual training” company that helps the military and law enforcement. It enjoyed topline growth of 89% in its most recent quarter. Read the full write-up for a lot more on all of today’s action. TAZR Trader: A test of yesterday's lows, and then some, is coming quicker than Kevin expected. Therefore, the editor played a little defense on Tuesday by getting back into ProShares UltraPro Short QQQ ETF (SQQQ). Read the full write-up for more. Zacks Short Sell List: The service made only one change in this week's adjustment. It short-covered GoodRx Holdings (GDRX) and replaced it with the addition of The Clorox Co. (CLX). Learn more about this emotion-free portfolio that takes advantage of falling and volatile markets by reading the Short Sell List Trader Guide. Headline Trader: "Market participants have been blindly buying every dip over the past 18-month with exceeding bullish sentiment keeping the S&P 500 above the 75% annualized return trendline. Since last March, this overzealous strategy has worked with bullish zeal driving up every sector. "However, the past two weeks of accelerating declines on price-confirming volumes seem to have broken this market's overoptimistic bias. The S&P 500's 50-day moving average declined in today's session for the first time since last fall, illustrating a shift in momentum from the bulls to the bears. "As I have said many times, I remain a market bull but am aiming to take advantage of this maturing cycles volatility in this seasonally weak trading month." -- Dan Laboe, who had the best performer among all ZU names today as undervalued Uber Technologies (UBER) jumped 11.5% after an encouraging third-quarter outlook. All the Best, Jim Giaquinto Recommendations from Zacks' Private Portfolios: Believe it or not, this article is not available on the Zacks.com website. The commentary is a partial overview of the daily activity from Zacks' private recommendation services. If you would like to follow our Buy and Sell signals in real time, we've made a special arrangement for readers of this website. Starting today you can see all the recommendations from all of Zacks' portfolios absolutely free for 7 days. Our services cover everything from value stocks and momentum trades to insider buying and positive earnings surprises (which we've predicted with an astonishing 80%+ accuracy). 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Category: topSource: zacksSep 22nd, 2021

Futures Bounce On Evergrande Reprieve With Fed Looming

Futures Bounce On Evergrande Reprieve With Fed Looming Despite today's looming hawkish FOMC meeting in which Powell is widely expected to unveil that tapering is set to begin as soon as November and where the Fed's dot plot may signal one rate hike in 2022, futures climbed as investor concerns over China's Evergrande eased after the property developer negotiated a domestic bond payment deal. Commodities rallied while the dollar was steady. Contracts on the S&P 500 and Nasdaq 100 flipped from losses to gains as China’s central bank boosted liquidity when it injected a gross 120BN in yuan, the most since January... ... and investors mulled a vaguely-worded statement from the troubled developer about an interest payment.  S&P 500 E-minis were up 23.0 points, or 0.53%, at 7:30 a.m. ET. Dow E-minis were up 199 points, or 0.60%, and Nasdaq 100 E-minis were up 44.00 points, or 0.29%. Among individual stocks, Fedex fell 5.8% after the delivery company cut its profit outlook on higher costs and stalled growth in shipments. Morgan Stanley says it sees the company’s 1Q issues getting “tougher from here.” Commodity-linked oil and metal stocks led gains in premarket trade, while a slight rise in Treasury yields supported major banks. However, most sectors were nursing steep losses in recent sessions. Here are some of the biggest U.S. movers: Adobe (ADBE US) down 3.1% after 3Q update disappointed the high expectations of investors, though the broader picture still looks solid, Morgan Stanley said in a note Freeport McMoRan (FCX US), Cleveland- Cliffs (CLF US), Alcoa (AA US) and U.S. Steel (X US) up 2%-3% premarket, following the path of global peers as iron ore prices in China rallied Aethlon Medical (AEMD US) and Exela Technologies (XELAU US) advance along with other retail traders’ favorites in the U.S. premarket session. Aethlon jumps 21%; Exela up 8.3% Other so-called meme stocks also rise: ContextLogic +1%; Clover Health +0.9%; Naked Brand +0.9%; AMC +0.5% ReWalk Robotics slumps 18% in U.S. premarket trading, a day after nearly doubling in value Stitch Fix (SFIX US) rises 15.7% in light volume after the personal styling company’s 4Q profit and sales blew past analysts’ expectations Hyatt Hotels (H US) seen opening lower after the company launches a seven-million-share stock offering Summit Therapeutics (SMMT US) shares fell as much as 17% in Tuesday extended trading after it said the FDA doesn’t agree with the change to the primary endpoint that has been implemented in the ongoing Phase III Ri-CoDIFy studies when combining the studies Marin Software (MRIN US) surged more than 75% Tuesday postmarket after signing a new revenue-sharing agreement with Google to develop its enterprise technology platforms and software products The S&P 500 had fallen for 10 of the past 12 sessions since hitting a record high, as fears of an Evergrande default exacerbated seasonally weak trends and saw investors pull out of stocks trading at lofty valuations. The Nasdaq fell the least among its peers in recent sessions, as investors pivoted back into big technology names that had proven resilient through the pandemic. Focus now turns to the Fed's decision, due at 2 p.m. ET where officials are expected to signal a start to scaling down monthly bond purchases (see our preview here).  The Fed meeting comes after a period of market volatility stoked by Evergrande’s woes. China’s wider property-sector curbs are also feeding into concerns about a slowdown in the economic recovery from the pandemic. “Chair Jerome Powell could hint at the tapering approaching shortly,” said Sébastien Barbé, a strategist at Credit Agricole CIB. “However, given the current uncertainty factors (China property market, Covid, pace of global slowdown), the Fed should remain cautious when it comes to withdrawing liquidity support.” Meanwhile, confirming what Ray Dalio said that the taper will just bring more QE, Governing Council member Madis Muller said the  European Central Bank may boost its regular asset purchases once the pandemic-era emergency stimulus comes to an end. “Dovish signals could unwind some of the greenback’s gains while offering relief to stock markets,” Han Tan, chief market analyst at Exinity Group, wrote in emailed comments. A “hawkish shift would jolt markets, potentially pushing Treasury yields and the dollar past the upper bound of recent ranges, while gold and equities would sell off hunting down the next levels of support.” China avoided a major selloff as trading resumed following a holiday, after the country’s central bank boosted its injection of short-term cash into the financial system. MSCI’s Asia-Pacific index declined for a third day, dragged lower by Japan. Stocks were also higher in Europe. Basic resources - which bounced from a seven month low - and energy were among the leading gainers in the Stoxx Europe 600 index as commodity prices steadied after Beijing moved to contain fears of a spiraling debt crisis. Entain Plc rose more than 7%, extending Tuesday’s gain as it confirmed it received a takeover proposal from DraftKings Inc. Peer Flutter Entertainment Plc climbed after settling a legal dispute.  Here are some of the biggest European movers today: Entain shares jump as much as 11% after DraftKings Inc. offered to acquire the U.K. gambling company for about $22.4 billion. Vivendi rises as much as 3.1% in Paris, after Tuesday’s spinoff of Universal Music Group. Legrand climbs as much as 2.1% after Exane BNP Paribas upgrades to outperform and raises PT to a Street-high of EU135. Orpea shares falls as much as 2.9%, after delivering 1H results that Jefferies (buy) says were a “touch” below consensus. Bechtle slides as much as 5.1% after Metzler downgrades to hold from buy, saying persistent supply chain problems seem to be weighing on growth. Sopra Steria drops as much as 4.1% after Stifel initiates coverage with a sell, citing caution on company’s M&A strategy Despite the Evergrande announcement, Asian stocks headed for their longest losing streak in more than a month amid continued China-related concerns, with traders also eying policy decisions from major central banks. The MSCI Asia Pacific Index dropped as much as 0.7% in its third day of declines, with TSMC and Keyence the biggest drags. China’s CSI 300 tumbled as much as 1.9% as the local market reopened following a two-day holiday. However, the gauge came off lows after an Evergrande unit said it will make a bond interest payment and as China’s central bank boosted liquidity.  Taiwan’s equity benchmark led losses in Asia on Wednesday, dragged by TSMC after a two-day holiday, while markets in Hong Kong and South Korea were closed. Key stock gauges in Australia, Indonesia and Vietnam rose “A liquidity injection from the People’s Bank of China accompanied the Evergrande announcement, which only served to bolster sentiment further,” according to DailyFX’s Thomas Westwater and Daniel Dubrovsky. “For now, it appears that market-wide contagion risk linked to a potential Evergrande collapse is off the table.” Japanese equities fell for a second day amid global concern over China’s real-estate sector, as the Bank of Japan held its key stimulus tools in place while flagging pressures on the economy. Electronics makers were the biggest drag on the Topix, which declined 1%. Daikin and Fanuc were the largest contributors to a 0.7% loss in the Nikkei 225. The BOJ had been expected to maintain its policy levers ahead of next week’s key ruling party election. Traders are keenly awaiting the Federal Reserve’s decision due later for clues on the U.S. central banks plan for tapering stimulus. “Markets for some time have been convinced that the BOJ has reached the end of the line on normalization and will remain in a holding pattern on policy until at least April 2023 when Governor Kuroda is scheduled to leave,” UOB economist Alvin Liew wrote in a note. “Attention for the BOJ will now likely shift to dealing with the long-term climate change issues.” In the despotic lockdown regime that is Australia, the S&P/ASX 200 index rose 0.3% to close at 7,296.90, reversing an early decline in a rally led by mining and energy stocks. Banks closed lower for the fourth day in a row. Champion Iron was among the top performers after it was upgraded at Citi. IAG was among the worst performers after an earthquake caused damage to buildings in Melbourne. In New Zealand, the S&P/NZX 50 index rose 0.3% to 13,215.80 In FX, commodity currencies rallied as concerns about China Evergrande Group’s debt troubles eased as China’s central bank boosted liquidity and investors reviewed a statement from the troubled developer about an interest payment. Overnight implied volatility on the pound climbed to the highest since March ahead of Bank of England’s meeting on Thursday. The British pound weakened after Business Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng warnedthat people should prepare for longer-term high energy prices amid a natural-gas shortage that sent power costs soaring. Several U.K. power firms have stopped taking in new clients as small energy suppliers struggle to meet their previous commitments to sell supplies at lower prices. Overnight volatility in the euro rises above 10% for the first time since July ahead of the Federal Reserve’s monetary policy decision announcement. The Aussie jumped as much as 0.5% as iron-ore prices rebounded. Spot surged through option-related selling at 0.7240 before topping out near 0.7265 strikes expiring Wednesday, according to Asia- based FX traders.  Elsewhere, the yen weakened and commodity-linked currencies such as the Australian dollar pushed higher. In rates, the dollar weakened against most of its Group-of-10 peers. Treasury futures were under modest pressure in early U.S. trading, leaving yields cheaper by ~1.5bp from belly to long-end of the curve. The 10-year yield was at ~1.336% steepening the 2s10s curve by ~1bp as the front-end was little changed. Improved risk appetite weighed; with stock futures have recovering much of Tuesday’s losses as Evergrande concerns subside. Focal point for Wednesday’s session is FOMC rate decision at 2pm ET.   FOMC is expected to suggest it will start scaling back asset purchases later this year, while its quarterly summary of economic projections reveals policy makers’ expectations for the fed funds target in coming years in the dot-plot update; eurodollar positions have emerged recently that anticipate a hawkish shift Bitcoin dropped briefly below $40,000 for the first time since August amid rising criticism from regulators, before rallying as the mood in global markets improved. In commodities, Iron ore halted its collapse and metals steadied. Oil advanced for a second day. Bitcoin slid below $40,000 for the first time since early August before rebounding back above $42,000.   To the day ahead now, and the main highlight will be the aforementioned Federal Reserve decision and Chair Powell’s subsequent press conference. Otherwise on the data side, we’ll get US existing home sales for August, and the European Commission’s advance consumer confidence reading for the Euro Area in September. Market Snapshot S&P 500 futures up 0.4% to 4,362.25 STOXX Europe 600 up 0.5% to 461.19 MXAP down 0.7% to 199.29 MXAPJ down 0.4% to 638.39 Nikkei down 0.7% to 29,639.40 Topix down 1.0% to 2,043.55 Hang Seng Index up 0.5% to 24,221.54 Shanghai Composite up 0.4% to 3,628.49 Sensex little changed at 59,046.84 Australia S&P/ASX 200 up 0.3% to 7,296.94 Kospi up 0.3% to 3,140.51 Brent Futures up 1.5% to $75.47/bbl Gold spot up 0.0% to $1,775.15 U.S. Dollar Index little changed at 93.26 German 10Y yield rose 0.6 bps to -0.319% Euro little changed at $1.1725 Top Overnight News from Bloomberg What would it take to knock the U.S. recovery off course and send Federal Reserve policy makers back to the drawing board? Not much — and there are plenty of candidates to deliver the blow The European Central Bank will discuss boosting its regular asset purchases once the pandemic-era emergency stimulus comes to an end, but any such increase is uncertain, Governing Council member Madis Muller said Investors seeking hints about how Beijing plans to deal with China Evergrande Group’s debt crisis are training their cross hairs on the central bank’s liquidity management A quick look at global markets courtesy of Newsquawk Asian equity markets traded mixed as caution lingered ahead of upcoming risk events including the FOMC, with participants also digesting the latest Evergrande developments and China’s return to the market from the Mid-Autumn Festival. ASX 200 (+0.3%) was positive with the index led higher by the energy sector after a rebound in oil prices and as tech also outperformed, but with gains capped by weakness in the largest-weighted financials sector including Westpac which was forced to scrap the sale of its Pacific businesses after failing to secure regulatory approval. Nikkei 225 (-0.7%) was subdued amid the lack of fireworks from the BoJ announcement to keep policy settings unchanged and ahead of the upcoming holiday closure with the index only briefly supported by favourable currency outflows. Shanghai Comp. (+0.4%) was initially pressured on return from the long-weekend and with Hong Kong markets closed, but pared losses with risk appetite supported by news that Evergrande’s main unit Hengda Real Estate will make coupon payments due tomorrow, although other sources noted this is referring to the onshore bond payments valued around USD 36mln and that there was no mention of the offshore bond payments valued at USD 83.5mln which are also due tomorrow. Meanwhile, the PBoC facilitated liquidity through a CNY 120bln injection and provided no surprises in keeping its 1-year and 5-year Loan Prime Rates unchanged for the 17th consecutive month at 3.85% and 4.65%, respectively. Finally, 10yr JGBs were flat amid the absence of any major surprises from the BoJ policy announcement and following the choppy trade in T-notes which were briefly pressured in a knee-jerk reaction to the news that Evergrande’s unit will satisfy its coupon obligations tomorrow, but then faded most of the losses as cautiousness prevailed. Top Asian News Gold Steady as Traders Await Outcome of Fed Policy Meeting Evergrande Filing on Yuan Bond Interest Leaves Analysts Guessing Singapore Category E COE Price Rises to Highest Since April 2014 Asian Stocks Fall for Third Day as Focus Turns to Central Banks European equities (Stoxx 600 +0.5%) trade on a firmer footing in the wake of an encouraging APAC handover. Focus overnight was on the return of Chinese participants from the Mid-Autumn Festival and news that Evergrande’s main unit, Hengda Real Estate will make coupon payments due tomorrow; however, we await indication as to whether they will meet Thursday’s offshore payment deadline as well. Furthermore, the PBoC facilitated liquidity through a CNY 120bln injection whilst keeping its 1-year and 5-year Loan Prime Rates unchanged (as expected). Note, despite gaining yesterday and today, thus far, the Stoxx 600 is still lower to the tune of 0.7% on the week. Stateside, futures are also trading on a firmer footing ahead of today’s FOMC policy announcement, at which, market participants will be eyeing any clues for when the taper will begin and digesting the latest dot plot forecasts. Furthermore, the US House voted to pass the bill to fund the government through to December 3rd and suspend the debt limit to end-2022, although this will likely be blocked by Senate Republicans. Back to Europe, sectors are mostly firmer with outperformance in Basic Resources and Oil & Gas amid upside in the metals and energy complex. Elsewhere, Travel & Leisure is faring well amid further upside in Entain (+6.1%) with the Co. noting it rejected an earlier approach from DraftKings at GBP 25/shr with the new offer standing at GBP 28/shr. Additionally for the sector, Flutter Entertainment (+4.1%) are trading higher after settling the legal dispute between the Co. and Commonwealth of Kentucky. Elsewhere, in terms of deal flow, Iliad announced that it is to acquire UPC Poland for around USD 1.8bln. Top European News Energy Cost Spike Gets on EU Ministers’ Green Deal Agenda Travel Startup HomeToGo Gains in Frankfurt Debut After SPAC Deal London Stock Exchange to Shut Down CurveGlobal Exchange EU Banks Expected to Add Capital for Climate Risk, EBA Says In FX, trade remains volatile as this week’s deluge of global Central Bank policy meetings continues to unfold amidst fluctuations in broad risk sentiment from relatively pronounced aversion at various stages to a measured and cautious pick-up in appetite more recently. Hence, the tide is currently turning in favour of activity, cyclical and commodity currencies, albeit tentatively in the run up to the Fed, with the Kiwi and Aussie trying to regroup on the 0.7000 handle and 0.7350 axis against their US counterpart, and the latter also striving to shrug off negative domestic impulses like a further decline below zero in Westpac’s leading index and an earthquake near Melbourne. Next up for Nzd/Usd and Aud/Usd, beyond the FOMC, trade data and preliminary PMIs respectively. DXY/CHF/EUR/CAD - Notwithstanding the overall improvement in market tone noted above, or another major change in mood and direction, the Dollar index appears to have found a base just ahead of 93.000 and ceiling a similar distance away from 93.500, as it meanders inside those extremes awaiting US existing home sales that are scheduled for release before the main Fed events (policy statement, SEP and post-meeting press conference from chair Powell). Indeed, the Franc, Euro and Loonie have all recoiled into tighter bands vs the Greenback, between 0.9250-26, 1.1739-17 and 1.2831-1.2770, but with the former still retaining an underlying bid more evident in the Eur/Chf cross that is consolidating under 1.0850 and will undoubtedly be acknowledged by the SNB tomorrow. Meanwhile, Eur/Usd has hardly reacted to latest ECB commentary from Muller underpinning that the APP is likely to be boosted once the PEPP envelope is closed, though Usd/Cad is eyeing a firm rebound in oil prices in conjunction with hefty option expiry interest at the 1.2750 strike (1.8 bn) that may prevent the headline pair from revisiting w-t-d lows not far beneath the half round number. GBP/JPY - The major laggards, as Sterling slips slightly further beneath 1.3650 against the Buck to a fresh weekly low and Eur/Gbp rebounds from circa 0.8574 to top 0.8600 on FOMC day and T-1 to super BoE Thursday. Elsewhere, the Yen has lost momentum after peaking around 109.12 and still not garnering sufficient impetus to test 109.00 via an unchanged BoJ in terms of all policy settings and guidance, as Governor Kuroda trotted out the no hesitation to loosen the reins if required line for the umpteenth time. However, Usd/Jpy is holding around 109.61 and some distance from 1.1 bn option expiries rolling off between 109.85-110.00 at the NY cut. SCANDI/EM - Brent’s revival to Usd 75.50+/brl from sub-Usd 73.50 only yesterday has given the Nok another fillip pending confirmation of a Norges Bank hike tomorrow, while the Zar has regained some poise with the aid of firmer than forecast SA headline and core CPI alongside a degree of retracement following Wednesday’s breakdown of talks on a pay deal for engineering workers that prompted the union to call a strike from early October. Similarly, the Cnh and Cny by default have regrouped amidst reports that the CCP is finalising details to restructure Evergrande into 3 separate entities under a plan that will see the Chinese Government take control. In commodities, WTI and Brent are firmer this morning though once again fresh newsflow for the complex has been relatively slim and largely consisting of gas-related commentary; as such, the benchmarks are taking their cue from the broader risk tone (see equity section). The improvement in sentiment today has brought WTI and Brent back in proximity to being unchanged on the week so far as a whole; however, the complex will be dictated directly by the EIA weekly inventory first and then indirectly, but perhaps more pertinently, by today’s FOMC. On the weekly inventories, last nights private release was a larger than expected draw for the headline and distillate components, though the Cushing draw was beneath expectations; for today, consensus is a headline draw pf 2.44mln. Moving to metals where the return of China has seen a resurgence for base metals with LME copper posting upside of nearly 3.0%, for instance. Albeit there is no fresh newsflow for the complex as such, so it remains to be seen how lasting this resurgence will be. Finally, spot gold and silver are firmer but with the magnitude once again favouring silver over the yellow metal. US Event Calendar 10am: Aug. Existing Home Sales MoM, est. -1.7%, prior 2.0% 2pm: Sept. FOMC Rate Decision (Lower Boun, est. 0%, prior 0% DB's Jim Reid concludes the overnight wrap All eyes firmly on China this morning as it reopens following a 2-day holiday. As expected the indices there have opened lower but the scale of the declines are being softened by the PBoC increasing its short term cash injections into the economy. They’ve added a net CNY 90bn into the system. On Evergrande, we’ve also seen some positive headlines as the property developers’ main unit Hengda Real Estate Group has said that it will make coupon payment for an onshore bond tomorrow. However, the exchange filing said that the interest payment “has been resolved via negotiations with bondholders off the clearing house”. This is all a bit vague and doesn’t mention the dollar bond at this stage. Meanwhile, Bloomberg has reported that Chinese authorities have begun to lay the groundwork for a potential restructuring that could be one of the country’s biggest, assembling accounting and legal experts to examine the finances of the group. All this follows news from Bloomberg yesterday that Evergrande missed interest payments that had been due on Monday to at least two banks. In terms of markets the CSI (-1.11%), Shanghai Comp (-0.29%) and Shenzhen Comp (-0.53%) are all lower but have pared back deeper losses from the open. We did a flash poll in the CoTD yesterday (link here) and after over 700 responses in a couple of hours we found only 8% who we thought Evergrande would still be impacting financial markets significantly in a month’s time. 24% thought it would be slightly impacting. The other 68% thought limited or no impact. So the world is relatively relaxed about contagion risk for now. The bigger risk might be the knock on impact of weaker Chinese growth. So that’s one to watch even if you’re sanguine on the systemic threat. Craig Nicol in my credit team did a good note yesterday (link here) looking at the contagion risk to the broader HY market. I thought he summed it up nicely as to why we all need to care one way or another in saying that “Evergrande is the largest corporate, in the largest sector, of the second largest economy in the world”. For context AT&T is the largest corporate borrower in the US market and VW the largest in Europe. Turning back to other Asian markets now and the Nikkei (-0.65%) is down but the Hang Seng (+0.51%) and Asx (+0.58%) are up. South Korean markets continue to remain closed for a holiday. Elsewhere, yields on 10y USTs are trading flattish while futures on the S&P 500 are up +0.10% and those on the Stoxx 50 are up +0.21%. Crude oil prices are also up c.+1% this morning. In other news, the Bank of Japan policy announcement overnight was a non-event as the central bank maintained its yield curve target while keeping the policy rate and asset purchases plan unchanged. The central bank also unveiled more details of its green lending program and said that it would immediately start accepting applications and would begin making the loans in December. The relatively calm Asian session follows a stabilisation in markets yesterday following their rout on Monday as investors looked forward to the outcome of the Fed’s meeting later today. That said, it was hardly a resounding performance, with the S&P 500 unable to hold on to its intraday gains and ending just worse than unchanged after the -1.70% decline the previous day as investors remained vigilant as to the array of risks that continue to pile up on the horizon. One of these is in US politics and legislators seem no closer to resolving the various issues surrounding a potential government shutdown at the end of the month, along with a potential debt ceiling crisis in October, which is another flashing alert on the dashboard for investors that’s further contributing to weaker sentiment right now. Looking ahead now, today’s main highlight will be the latest Federal Reserve decision along with Chair Powell’s subsequent press conference, with the policy decision out at 19:00 London time. Markets have been on edge for any clues about when the Fed might begin to taper asset purchases, but concern about tapering actually being announced at this meeting has dissipated over recent weeks, particularly after the most recent nonfarm payrolls in August came in at just +235k, and the monthly CPI print also came in beneath consensus expectations for the first time since November. In terms of what to expect, our US economists write in their preview (link here) that they see the statement adopting Chair Powell’s language that a reduction in the pace of asset purchases is appropriate “this year”, so long as the economy remains on track. They see Powell maintaining optionality about the exact timing of that announcement, but they think that the message will effectively be that the bar to pushing the announcement beyond November is relatively high in the absence of any material downside surprises. This meeting also sees the release of the FOMC’s latest economic projections and the dot plot, where they expect there’ll be an upward drift in the dots that raises the number of rate hikes in 2023 to 3, followed by another 3 increases in 2024. Back to yesterday, and as mentioned US equity markets fell for a second straight day after being unable to hold on to earlier gains, with the S&P 500 slightly lower (-0.08%). High-growth industries outperformed with biotech (+0.38%) and semiconductors (+0.18%) leading the NASDAQ (+0.22%) slightly higher, however the Dow Jones (-0.15%) also struggled. Europe saw a much stronger performance though as much of the US decline came after Europe had closed. The STOXX 600 gained +1.00% to erase most of Monday’s losses, with almost every sector in the index ending the day in positive territory. With risk sentiment improving for much of the day yesterday, US Treasuries sold off slightly and by the close of trade yields on 10yr Treasuries were up +1.2bps to 1.3226%, thanks to a +1.8bps increase in real yields. However, sovereign bonds in Europe told a different story as yields on 10yr bunds (-0.3bps), OATs (-0.3bps) and BTPs (-1.9bps) moved lower. Other safe havens including gold (+0.59%) and silver (+1.02%) also benefited, but this wasn’t reflected across commodities more broadly, with Bloomberg’s Commodity Spot Index (-0.30%) losing ground for a 4th consecutive session. Democratic Party leaders plan to vote on the Senate-approved $500bn bipartisan infrastructure bill next Monday, even with no resolution to the $3.5tr budget reconciliation measure that encompasses the remainder of the Biden Administration’s economic agenda. Democrats continue to work on the reconciliation measure but have turned their attention to the debt ceiling and government funding bills.Congress has fewer than two weeks before the current budget expires – on Oct 1 – to fund the government and raise the debt ceiling. Republicans yesterday noted that the Democrats could raise the ceiling on their own through the reconciliation process, with many saying that they would not be offering their support to any funding bill. Democrats continue to push for a bipartisan bill to raise the debt ceiling, pointing to their votes during the Trump administration. If Democrats are forced to tie the debt ceiling and funding bills to budget reconciliation, it could limit how much of the $3.5 trillion bill survives the last minute negotiations between progressives and moderates. More to come over the next 10 days. Staying on the US, there was an important announcement in President Biden’s speech at the UN General Assembly, as he said that he would work with Congress to double US funding to poorer nations to deal with climate change. That comes as UK Prime Minister Johnson (with the UK hosting the COP26 summit in less than 6 weeks’ time) has been lobbying other world leaders to find the $100bn per year that developed economies pledged by 2020 to support developing countries as they reduce their emissions and deal with climate change. In Germany, there are just 4 days to go now until the federal election, and a Forsa poll out yesterday showed a slight narrowing in the race, with the centre-left SPD remaining on 25%, but the CDU/CSU gained a point on last week to 22%, which puts them within the +/- 2.5 point margin of error. That narrowing has been seen in Politico’s Poll of Polls as well, with the race having tightened from a 5-point SPD lead over the CDU/CSU last week to a 3-point one now. Turning to the pandemic, Johnson & Johnson reported that their booster shot given 8 weeks after the first offered 100% protection against severe disease, 94% protection against symptomatic Covid in the US, and 75% against symptomatic Covid globally. Speaking of boosters, Bloomberg reported that the FDA was expected to decide as soon as today on a recommendation for Pfizer’s booster vaccine. That follows an FDA advisory panel rejecting a booster for all adults last Friday, restricting the recommendation to those over-65 and other high-risk categories. Staying with the US and vaccines, President Biden announced that the US was ordering 500mn doses of the Pfizer vaccine to be exported to the rest of the world. On the data front, there were some strong US housing releases for August, with housing starts up by an annualised 1.615m (vs. 1.55m expected), and building permits up by 1.728m (vs. 1.6m expected). Separately, the OECD released their Interim Economic Outlook, which saw them upgrade their inflation expectations for the G20 this year to +3.7% (up +0.2ppts from May) and for 2022 to +3.9% (up +0.5ppts from May). Their global growth forecast saw little change at +5.7% in 2021 (down a tenth) and +4.5% for 2022 (up a tenth). To the day ahead now, and the main highlight will be the aforementioned Federal Reserve decision and Chair Powell’s subsequent press conference. Otherwise on the data side, we’ll get US existing home sales for August, and the European Commission’s advance consumer confidence reading for the Euro Area in September. Tyler Durden Wed, 09/22/2021 - 08:05.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeSep 22nd, 2021

This artist painted murals to challenge the Taliban after their last rule. Then the militants destroyed them, leaving him fearing for his life.

Omaid Sharifi's Artlords covered Kabul in murals promoting women's rights and social justice. Then the Taliban came back and painted over them. People painting a mural in Afghanistan. Omaid Sharifi. The Taliban painted over dozens of murals, including one of George Floyd, after seizing Kabul. The murals were done by an artist group named Artlords, who wanted to cover up Kabul's blast walls. Insider spoke to its founder, who fled the country convinced the Taliban would kill him. See more stories on Insider's business page. Omaid Sharifi wanted to remind people that Afghanistan could be beautiful despite the war.He wanted to cover Kabul's blast walls, the huge concrete walls erected to protect buildings from bombings."We were fed up with these high blast walls," he told Insider. "It was making Kabul look like a prison."So in 2014 he founded Artlords, a collective of more than 150 artists that painted murals encouraging human rights and social justice in Kabul and other Afghan cities. Afghan men ride their bicycles past blast walls protecting the Ministry of Interior Affairs in Kabul in July 2021. AP Photo/Rahmat Gul A mural in Afghanistan. Omaid Sharifi. The goal was "to claim back back our space, to paint these ugly, concrete walls and make sure these blast walls are turned into something beautiful," Sharifi said.But one of the first things the Taliban did when they retook Afghanistan in mid-August was paint over the murals and, in many cases, replace them with their slogans.As of last week, around 100 Artlords murals had been covered up, Sharifi said.One of them was of George Floyd, the Black man who was killed by a white police officer in Minneapolis last year. Sharifi said Artlords painted it to show solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, "to show Afghanistan is not separate from the whole world," and to connect Floyd's death with the plight of Afghan refugees around the world. A mural showing George Floyd and the words "I can't breathe" in Kabul on September 4, 2021. West Asia News Agency with Reuters An image of the Floyd mural covered up, taken by Omaid Sharifi's colleague on September 16, 2021. Omaid Sharifi Sharifi said the Taliban started painting over murals before even announcing their government, leaving him convinced the militants were out to get him first."I might be the first to be punished or even killed because the Taliban showed that the first act of their new government was to destroy our murals," he said. Omaid Sharifi in August 2019. AP Photo/Rahmat Gul Artlords' murals went against the Taliban's principles, Sharifi said: The art promoted empathy and women's rights, and opposed violence, injustice, and Islamic extremism."I knew that I would not be able to have a voice under the Taliban," he said. Artlords members painting a message on a wall that reads "I am back because education prevails" at the American University of Afghanistan in Kabul in February 2018. REUTERS/Omar Sobhani. 'Hell on earth'Sharifi said he was helping paint a mural in Kabul the day the Taliban seized the city. A post shared by ArtLords (@artlordsnet) "I saw people panicking and running. We asked them what was happening while painting a mural about empathy, unity, and kindness. And they told us the Taliban were in the city," he said."I asked my staff and colleagues and artists to leave, go to their homes, and make sure their families are safe."Sharifi also decided to leave given how the Taliban used to treat artists."When I lived in their previous regime, from 1996 to 2001, I remember that any expression of art was banned," he said. "They destroyed a lot of paintings ... the punishment was severe for artists."Last time the Taliban were in power, they destroyed books and art, banned many types of music, and killed artists.-NHK WORLD News (@NHKWORLD_News) September 6, 2021-Omaid H. Sharifi-امید حفیظه شریفی (@OmaidSharifi) September 13, 2021Sharifi said he tried for five days to leave Afghanistan, finally managing to escape on August 22 after joining a convoy of cars entering Kabul's airport around 3 a.m.For days after the Taliban takeover, that airport was the scene of chaos as people frantically tried to escape, with some latching onto moving jets on the runway.Sharifi called it "hell on earth." Members of the Taliban Badri 313 military unit near the destroyed CIA base in Deh Sabz district on September 6, 2021, after the US pulled its troops out of the country. AAMIR QURESHI/AFP via Getty Images Vow to continueSharifi is now in a refugee camp in the United Arab Emirates, with only his backpack and no idea of what might come next."I have left all my life behind," he said."When I'm talking about this, my eyes are teary." Artlords members painting a mural of journalists who were killed in 2018 in Kabul in September 2018. AP Photo/Massoud Hossaini He said he and his wife, through working with NGOs, had already evacuated 53 artists and their families to countries including France, Albania, and Uganda. He told Insider last week that 103 members of Artlords - including LGBT artists - were still in Afghanistan, and he's working to get them out.But he said Artlords would continue their work, and one day hold exhibitions around the world."We will continue painting those murals the Taliban destroyed," he said."We will never stay silent."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 22nd, 2021

Markets are awaiting the next major test of Evergrande after default fears triggered a sell-off. Here"s what investors are focused on as key debt payment looms.

All eyes are on Evergrande's ability to pay $83 million in interest on its US-dollar denominated bonds due this Thursday. China Evergrande Group Chairman Hui Ka Yan attends a news conference on the property developer's annual results in Hong Kong, China. Reuters/Bobby Yip The Evergrande debt crisis roiled global markets on Monday as the company's ability to pay its debts come into focus.All eyes are on Evergrande's ability to pay $83 million in interest on its bonds due this Thursday.Evergrande already missed interest payments to banks that were due on Monday.Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.All eyes are on Evergrande, China's second largest property developer that is sitting on more than $300 billion in liabilities and may not be able to meet its debt obligations.The fear of contagion spread from a potential default of Evergrande roiled markets on Monday, with the S&P 500 falling as much as 3%, and the Dow Jones down nearly 1,000 points at its worst level. US stocks rebounded by about 0.50% in initial Tuesday trades.So what's next for the embattled company? Interest payments, mostly.On Thursday, $83 million in interest payments will be due on one of Evergrande's five-year bond, which had an initial issue size of about $2 billion, according to CNBC citing data from S&P Global Ratings.Then next Wednesday, September 29, Evergrande will have another interest payment due on a seven-year bond. Evergrande's inability to pay the upcoming bond payments would spell more trouble for the company, as it would mean a potential default on several of its US-dollar denominated bonds. That would be worse than the already missed interest payments to multiple banks that were due on Monday, according to Bloomberg.As of late Tuesday local time, those payments were still outstanding. Some banks are waiting for the developer to propose a potential loan extension plan before they decide whether to declare the cash-strapped developer in default, according to the report.Even if Evergrande is able to make its upcoming debt payments and already missed bank payments, the crisis will likely remain given that the company has $669 million of coupon payments remaining this year. And of the $88.5 billion that Evergrande borrowed from banks and other financial institutions, nearly half of that is due in less than a year, Bloomberg reported.Speculation is now mounting that the Chinese government will provide some form of aid to the non-state owned enterprise given its immense pile of debt, uncertainties about the underlying value of its assets, and the large impact the real estate sector has on the Chinese economy. That aid may be even more likely if Evergrande represents just the first of several property developers experiencing deteriorating financial conditions, meaning a more systemic risk to China's real estate and financial markets is apparent.But some believe Evergrande is not too big to fail, including Andrew Left of Citron Research, who first wrote in 2012 why the property developer was on the verge of insolvency."I don't know what happened, but finally this past week, or month, he ran out of friends who are going to refinance his debt, and the debt became way too much," Left said of Evergrande's Chairman Hui Ka Yan. "In China, the big talk is, 'he's not too big to fail."Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 21st, 2021

The stock market"s fear gauge could signal more weakness ahead if it closes above this key level, according to technical analyst Katie Stockton

"We'd be concerned if the VIX closes above 25 for two consecutive days because that would hold bearish implications for the inversely correlated S&P 500." A trader works on the floor at the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) in New York City, New York, U.S., March 3, 2020. Andrew Kelly/Reuters The stock market could have more downside ahead after Monday's Evergrande-induced meltdown, according to technical analyst Katie Stockton of Fairlead Strategies.Stockton has her eyes on the stock market's fear gauge to sense if more downside is likely.Sign up here for our daily newsletter, 10 Things Before the Opening Bell.The stock market could still have further downside ahead if the Volatility Index closes above the key 25 level for the second day in a row, according to a Tuesday note from technical analyst Katie Stockton of Fairlead Strategies.Stockton is keeping an eye on the market's fear gauge as investors assess the damage from a potential default of China's second largest property developer, Evergrande.The potential insolvency risk for Evergrande sent the S&P 500 down as much as 3% yesterday after it became clear that the company may be unable to meet its upcoming debt payments of $83 million on Thursday. Now many market participants are wondering if Evergrande's $300 billion in liabilities could represent a systemic risk to markets.According to Stockton, the S&P 500's decisive close below its 50-day moving average on Monday means secondary support at 4,238 is in play, representing potential downside of 3% form current levels. "The 5% pullback is differentiated negatively from other dips below the 50-day moving average in that the indicators have seen notable deterioration. The daily MACD indicator is in negative territory and the weekly stochastics have fallen from overbought territory, increasing risk of downside follow-through," Stockton explained.Monday's price action is comparable to the March 4 low, in which the S&P 500 fell decisively below its 50-day moving average. But that price action was reversed on March 5, when the S&P 500 jumped back above its rising 50-day moving average."Should we see the same from the S&P 500 today, that would indicate that the pullback has matured already. Otherwise, we would brace for a breach of the cloud and test of secondary support," Stockton said.Despite Tuesday's relief rally of about 0.5%, the S&P 500 still remains 1.5% below its 50-day moving average.Stockton is watching the 25 level on the VIX to sense if more downside is likely."We would be concerned if the VIX closes above 25 for two consecutive days because that would hold bearish implications for the inversely correlated S&P 500," Stockton concluded.As of Tuesday afternoon, the VIX traded at 23.57 and hit an intraday high of 25.60. Stockcharts.com Read the original article on Business Insider.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderSep 21st, 2021

Operation "Go It Alone": Disenchanted Europeans May Build Their Own Army

Operation 'Go It Alone': Disenchanted Europeans May Build Their Own Army Authored by Doug Bandow via ResponsibleStatecraft.org, The chaotic Afghanistan withdrawal has renewed talk about striking out and leaning less on the U.S. But is it possible? German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen , Eric Trappier and Emmanuel Macron attend the 53rd International Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport and the unveiling of the French-German-Spanish New Generation Fighter (NGF) model, June 17, 2019. REUTERS/Benoit Tessier/PoolPhoto by Jacques Witt/Pool/ABACAPRESS.COM Photo by Jacques Witt/pool/ABACAPRESS.COM Europeans are a moody lot. Whenever they feel neglected by America - meaning most anytime Washington is busy elsewhere - there is much wailing and gnashing of teeth. And endless demands for “reassurance,” as in additional promises to spend and do even more to defend the continent. European unease again is on the rise. President Joe Biden’s chaotic Afghanistan withdrawal allegedly without even the pretense of consultation hit Europe particularly hard. There were charges that Biden didn’t coordinate with European governments, which had sizable groups of military personnel and civilians in Afghanistan (The NATO chief denies the alliance wasn’t consulted).  It would seem that the continental states have more reason than usual to be upset. While brickbats tossed Washington’s way aren’t likely to have much effect, Europe’s impotence has spurred renewed interest in expanding the continent’s military capabilities, which could become the most significant consequence of Europe’s involvement in Washington’s 20-year Afghan misadventure. When European defense ministers gathered in late August, their meeting was filled with complaints of a “fiasco” and “debacle.” They were frustrated that they had no ability to act independently but had to rely on America. Of course, none of this should have been a surprise. French President Emmanuel Macron previously called NATO “brain dead,” promoted “strategic autonomy,” and advocated a “true European army,” with no result. Grandiose ideas of an independent European military force have long circulated to no end. More than two decades ago plans were actually made for a 60,000 multinational force, which never appeared. Nor did later proposals for 1500-member “battle groups.” Now Josep Borrell, the European Union’s de facto foreign minister, wants to establish an “initial entry force” of about 5,000 soldiers.  He complained: “We Europeans found ourselves — not only for the evacuations out of the Kabul airport but also more broadly — depending on American decisions.” The Afghanistan experience was particularly painful, he observed, showing “that the deficiencies in our strategic autonomy come with a price.” He advocated “new tools like this entry force,” so “The only way forward is to combine our forces and strengthen our capacity and our will to act.”  With an equivalent combined economy and larger population than America, Europe has long had the resources necessary to create such a unit. However, the will was always lacking, even for what would be small ball for America. Has that finally changed? Significant barriers to action remain. Historically, Washington opposed such an independent European force. U.S. officials feared that separate units would cause penurious Europeans to reduce resources available to NATO. Moreover, past administrations worried that the continent would move toward a more independent foreign and military policy, which is anathema to Washington. The U.S. wants Europe to do more, but only under the former’s control. Nor has the continent shown any interest in doing more. Despite modest growth in military outlays by a number of European states since 2014, the continent continues to badly lag America’s effort. In a pitifully honest self-review, German Defense Minister Annegret Kramp-Karrenbauer admitted that “Without America’s nuclear and conventional capabilities, Germany and Europe cannot protect themselves.” She cited estimates that “the United States currently provides 75 percent of all NATO capabilities.” Only France and the United Kingdom possess capable armed forces of serious size. Germany, Italy, and Spain have sizeable economies but minimal militaries, in theoretical and practical strength. Indeed, the poor readiness of the Bundeswehr, the heir to the once mighty Wehrmacht, would be comical if not so serious. Even countries which claim to fear Russian revanchism, most notably the three Baltic states and Poland, spend little more than 2 percent of GDP, a miserly investment on behalf of their freedom. In the field, noted Rem Korteweg of the Dutch Clingendael Institute, Bosnia and Libya demonstrated “the inability of Europeans to do anything serious without the Americans.” Although most European leaders formally assent to NATO insistence that they spend more, there is no public support for doing so. Most Europeans do not fear Russia, the only plausible security threat. Those who do expect Washington to shield them. That is why the eastern-most members of NATO want the presence of an American military tripwire, to ensure U.S. deaths (not theirs) and trigger automatic American involvement in war on their behalf if attacked by Moscow. Fear of U.S. disengagement might cause more European countries to spend more on their militaries, but so far no one expects the American military to go home. As long as Washington’s security guarantee appears secure, few European nations are likely to make an added investment in a European “initial entry force.” Indeed, Europeans do not support going to war for their neighbors even while expecting Americans to go to war for them. Last year the Pew Research Center surveyed 14 NATO members. In Poland, which constantly demands more U.S. attention, only 40 percent of respondents agreed that “our country should use military force” in response to a Russian attack on a NATO ally. Just a third in Germany, which was loaded with allied troops during the Cold War. And a quarter in Greece and Italy. Although many governments are more supportive of NATO and military outlays than their publics, at a time of economic difficulty and fiscal stringency they are more likely to curb than expand spending on the armed forces. President Biden should strongly support European efforts to create more effective militaries, however they are organized. Indeed, he should go further and encourage the continent to move toward military independence. Although advocates of staying in Afghanistan forever pointed to U.S. deployments in Europe and Asia as precedent, foreign policy scholar Mark Sheetz noted that “the purpose of America’s ‘temporary’ intervention in Western Europe was to eliminate the need for ‘permanent’ intervention.” Similarly, Dwight Eisenhower, NATO supreme commander before becoming president, warned against acting like “a modern Rome guarding the far frontiers with our legions.” Instead, he advocated helping “these people [to] regain their confidence and get on their own military feet.” Of course, establishing a 5,000-member rapid deployment force would be only a small start to Europeans getting “on their own military feet.” The Center for American Progress recently reported: “European militaries have now experienced decades of decline. Today, much of Europe’s military hardware is in a shocking state of disrepair. … European forces aren’t ready to fight with the equipment they have, and the equipment they have isn’t good enough.” However, the crushing embarrassment of Afghanistan might help change that. Paolo Gentiloni, EU commissioner and former Italian prime minister, allowed that “It’s a terrible paradox, but this debacle could be the start of Europe’s moment.” Although only if Europe chooses to spend and do more. History is not promising, but reality might finally intrude. The Europeans lack credibility in criticizing Washington’s admittedly wretched performance in Afghanistan. Their insults will merely antagonize Americans tired of European cheap-riding. And defense subsidies for Europe will inevitably be targeted as Washington’s debt explodes, heading toward the post-World War II record and ultimately well beyond. The Afghanistan imbroglio provided Europe with a long overdue wake up call. The Biden administration should reinforce that message by warning that the U.S. will not forever provide defense welfare for a continent both prosperous and populous. If European governments don’t like being treated dismissively by Washington, they need the capability and will to act independently. Tyler Durden Tue, 09/21/2021 - 05:00.....»»

Category: blogSource: zerohedgeSep 21st, 2021

New York developer eyes Chapel Hill for 128-acre mixed-use community

A New York-based developer is making its entrance into the Triangle with a big mixed-use development in Chapel Hill, including hundreds of new homes......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsMay 25th, 2021

Exclusive: Amazon to expand air cargo hub by 60+ acres at Lakeland airport

The expansion is driven by market demands in e-commerce and Amazon's growing stake in the marketplace with warehouses and distribution centers across Tampa Bay......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsApr 27th, 2021

Developer pursuing 128-unit apartment building for Melwood Avenue in Oakland

Mercer County developer seeking to add new apartment address to a block of Melwood that's mostly a collection of warehouses now in Oakland......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsApr 21st, 2021

New burger joint slated for RDU as airport eyes slow comeback

The airport could see a couple of new food options open this summer......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsApr 18th, 2021

Charlotte developer eyes Durham for big industrial project — again

Charlotte developer Trinity Capital Advisors is at it again with another massive industrial project in the Triangle......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsMar 17th, 2021

Developer Rick Caruso eyes $40 million for Malibu mansion

Billionaire developer Rick Caruso, the ma.....»»

Category: topSource: latimesFeb 22nd, 2021

San Francisco-based developer eyes Uptown parking lots for 12-story apartment building

The developer is also planning to build more apartments in RiNo......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsApr 1st, 2020

Michigan developer eyes Cary for senior living community

A Michigan developer has filed plans with the town of Cary for a new senior living community with plans calling for nearly 180 units in a 4-story complex......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsMar 30th, 2020

Bombardier begins to build new facility at South Florida airport

A billionaire developer is working with the aerospace company......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsMar 6th, 2020

A plane was forced to turn around and land back at Dublin airport after hitting a hare on the runway

Moritz Frankenberg/picture alliance via Getty Images/Aer Lingus/Business Insider An Aer Lingus plane had to turn back shortly after taking off from Dublin Airport on Thursday morning after it hit a hare on the runway during takeoff. The fligh.....»»

Category: topSource: businessinsiderFeb 21st, 2020

Exclusive: France"s Engie eyes U.S. energy services firm Ameresco - sources

French power utility Engie SA has approached Ameresco Inc , a U.S. provider of energy efficiency solutions and developer of renewable energy plants, to express interest in acquiring it, according to people familiar with the matter......»»

Category: topSource: reutersFeb 20th, 2020

Spec industrial facility planned by Mitchell airport

Minneapolis developer Jeff Hall is looking to clear contaminated soils from land near Milwaukee Mitchell International Airport for a large new speculative industrial building......»»

Category: topSource: bizjournalsFeb 18th, 2020