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What Blows up Next?

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posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 02:05 AM
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I'm wondering if anyone here has thought as to what institution, industry, or market is most likely to immolate within the next couple of weeks to months. I realize that CPDAMAN's 2009 thread was closed because it turned more into an investment thread than a discussion with a conspiracy related theme, and let's try to avoid that if possible.

I think probably the biggest thing that makes me go hmmm is the Obama/Bush collaboration on the 2nd half of the TARP.


Acting at Barack Obama's behest, President George W. Bush on Monday asked Congress for the final $350 billion in the financial bailout fund, effectively ceding economic reins to the president-elect in an extraordinary display of transition teamwork.


from yahoo

Given the relative speed at which the money can be released why the hurry to get the process started so close to the Inauguration? Is something on the precipice, and if so what could it be?

One potential KABOOM is Citigroup (C). Something doesn't smell quite right with the recent news about a possible sale of C's Smith-Barney retail brokerage to Morgan Stanley (MS). I understand that C needs capital and MS needs to expand its retail brokerage, but something about that deal just doesn't seem right.


Shares of the troubled bank tumble on reports of a sale of the company's Smith Barney division -- and some analysts warn a breakup of the banking giant could soon follow.


The incredibly shrinking Citigroup-From CNN

Has Citigroup gone from too big to fail to too big to save?

Not to be outdone Bank of America (BAC) fell over 10% today. Right before this ball of feces really got to going downhill BAC bought the infamous Countrywide financial, supposedly for the mortgage servicing arm. There are still bodies to be found there as well IMHO.

Still within the realm of finance but a little more attached to the real world is the area of Commercial Real Estate (CRE). Real Estate Investment Trusts (REITs) specializing in CRE are being hit with problems refinancing their debt and simultaneously seeing massive carnage in their tenants especially the REITs specializing in retail space.

Retailers are having their own horror show from the 4Q 08 sales. Many are closing stores and several are downright bankrupt.

The GM and Chrysler only exist currently because CONgress wills it.

I feel we are a bit overdue for a European blowup. The banks are more opaque and less well capitalized, and several European governments are deeper in debt as a percentage of GDP than even the US.

I'm not too great with commercial bonds and monitoring that market but has anyone heard how companies are doing in rolling their debt?

Geo-political events (aside from a worldwide recession) don't seem to be moving oil but one way. Gold seems to have topped at $1000/oz and seems to be printing lower highs and lower lows since (which my amatuer TA says is Bearish).

Several states, including California are teetering on the edge of insolvency. Ohio is having to borrow money from the Federal gov to make unemployment payments, and I'm pretty sure they aren't the only states in trouble.

And let's not forget about revelations of outright fraud. I have no doubt in my mind there are more Madeoffs out there. There is never just one cockaroach.

Given all the above, sovereign debt seems to be the most bubbleisious of asset classes. I have no idea as to how long that lasts, but if it breaks before the economy turns, I'm not sure I want to live in that world. I'm pretty sure the only reason T-s have run so far and hard is no one can answer the question "where else are you gonna put it that's safe". I'm afraid that when that question is answered, it will be the final nail in the coffin for the current paradigm of the US's place in the world. Obama's nearly 1 Trillion "Stimulus"/ continued pigman bailout might be one of the hammers tapping that nail. I could honestly see McCain or Bush for that matter picking the same people as Obama did on economic policy. Though I didn't vote for him his economic picks have squashed any "Hope" I had that he would "Change" things in regards to the economy. He does talk perty though.

So, anyone else have any ideas on what could potentially blow up short term. What have I missed? I get the feeling something is dead, and the rose scented TARP funds are needed to hide the Cadaver a little longer. My greatest fear is that it's not just another BBB (Big Bank And Broker), insurance company, GSE or Car Company and might be the entire system.




posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 02:25 AM
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I think things will temporarily appear to improve state side. Urbanities will have a false sense of normalcy but the ruralites are settling in for the long haul depression.

The next event may be around Feb 10. I think it centers on current world conflicts.

The airlines have been quite since avgas price drop but people are still not flying. The airlines will ask for emergency assistance to float them or subsidize them. One will end or go Merger this spring.



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 10:58 AM
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Central banks and governments are having trouble recovering from the first blow, and now weakened, they're about to be hit again even harder.

What happens next is the same as before, mortgage resets.

Wave 1: Resets of subprime mortgages killed the mortgage industry and wiped out all wall street banks, took a few depository banks down, insurance companies, and halted inter-bank credit. It nearly took down Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac.

Wave 2: Resets of Alt-A and Option adjustable will hit weakened institutions.

www.iht.com...

A second, far larger wave of U.S. mortgage defaults is building

By Vikas Bajaj Published: August 4, 2008

NEW YORK: The first wave of Americans to default on their home mortgages appears to be cresting, but a second, far larger one is building with alarming speed.
...
But with the U.S. economy struggling, homeowners with better credit are now falling behind on their payments in growing numbers. The percentage of mortgages in arrears in the category of loans one rung above subprime, so-called alternative-A, or alt-A, mortgages, quadrupled to 12 percent in April from a year earlier. Delinquencies among prime loans, which account for most of the $12 trillion market, doubled to 2.7 percent in that time.
...
"Subprime was the tip of the iceberg," said Thomas Atteberry, president of First Pacific Advisors, a investment firm in Los Angeles that trades mortgage securities. "Prime will be far bigger in its impact."
...
Prime and alt-A borrowers typically had a five- or seven-year grace period before having to start making payments toward their principal. By contrast, subprime loans had a two- to three-year introductory period. That difference partly explains the lag in delinquencies between the two types of loans, said David Watts, an analyst with CreditSights.


Mortgage resets


Mortgage defaults





posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 11:05 AM
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The banks are trying to fail to get the free money. My house payment went up 175$ in November 08 and I made the standard payment because that was in the account. I was out of town on a hunting trip till the end of the month and they forclosed on me the day after Thanksgiving. Not even a month late. They put the payment back in my account and then took it all as late interest. I turned the mess over to my lawyer to figure out. I'm not moving or giving up my house at all.

mikell



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 11:07 AM
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To answer your question, the next industries to immolate will be the same ones that were hurt before. Despite Paulson saying 'no more banks will fail'.

The Fed has run out of ammunition, and they will try to survive a much larger impact in a weakened condition without ammo.



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 11:11 AM
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The second wave seems to be one that will eat deeper into the middle class pockets as opposed to the first wave.

The commercial collapse will make certain parts of cities into vacant store front ghost towns.




In the world I see - you are stalking elk through the damp canyon forests around the ruins of Rockefeller Center. You'll wear leather clothes that will last you the rest of your life. You'll climb the wrist-thick kudzu vines that wrap the Sears Tower. And when you look down, you'll see tiny figures pounding corn, laying strips of venison on the empty car pool lane of some abandoned superhighway.
www.imdb.com...



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 11:30 AM
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Dbriefed i believe the lower long bond rates are tied to alot of the option arms and that the resets are significantly lower NOW than when the article was written in aug. As well as the fact that many seem surprised that the long bond fell.

Jefwane good thread starter, i think sov. gov debt will be quite safe over the next year (every time i read a good Jim willie column i get a little spooked) but rationale (less unbiased non gold perma bull minds IMO) (bond investors) realize the fed is quite ready to purchase long bonds to keep the yield low (especially when income tax revenues will be light for the gov't due to unemployment) keeping bond rates low in this enviornment is vital to pay off the interest on gov debt and relieve some pressure on mortgage rates.

Jefwane i think the biggest task the fed is looking toward (which will be kept on the down low unless you dig on forums or find a blog or two) will be creating and sustaing beliefs/ expectations that there will be future INFLATION as oppossed to (deflation) .........this *attempts* to keep consumers and investors from saving more and instead consuming.......should the fed begin to grow impatient (and appear to be losing) this battle you may see .....more columns like this written and get air time in the media www.timesonline.co.uk...

once Investor and consumer PSYCHOLOGY get entrenched into anticipating future prices to be lower........the psychology of deflation takes hold........ and then most all the monetism/keneysian efforts will be akin to pushing on a string........this is the fed's dilemma.....made worse by the Global nature of this asset price crash when the credit bubble rug was popped......Banking is a confidence game..........Bernanke must exude confidence that he will not let "deflation" happen here.....and even more so he must be able to convince investors that he is not bluffing...

it may come down to dramatic measures such as debt jubilee's and competive one time devaluations against gold that stops the spiral downward in prices (not necessarily living standards) also perhaps with a world war that will grow the debt

as far as the topic (LOL) i will look into that.........right now it appears the consumer will be the next shoe to drop .... CONSUMER CREDIT may drop up to 40% this year!

a lil birdie says;


More than $2 trillion in consumer credit could be cut in the next 18 months, as credit-card companies pull back credit lines in anticipation of credit funding problems and regulatory changes, said Meredith Whitney, an Oppenheimer Holdings Inc. (OPY) banking analyst who’s well-known for her gutsy and prescient (and ultimately correct) market calls.



“What you haven’t seen yet digested by the market is banks pulling lines from consumers,” Whitney said in an interview with CNBC. “And across the board you saw the big banks that command so much of the market share of key products like mortgages and credit cards start to pull lines in the third quarter and that’s going to continue in the fourth quarter. And that’s going to continue into 2009.”


she is talking specifically about lines of credit getting cut to consumers...not just higher % intrest rates on the cards

caps.fool.com...

[edit on 13-1-2009 by cpdaman]

[edit on 13-1-2009 by cpdaman]



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 11:36 AM
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reply to post by jefwane
 


The second half of the TARP funds being suddenly so important to release before Tuesday is simply an example of Obama/Bush colaberation. Obama has somehow talked Bush into being the fall guy, obtaining the funds through veto if necessary, so they're there for the Big O. If it doesn't happen before Tuesday, then it sets up a potentially embarassing scenario for Obama in which he is publically at odds with his own party and either loses the request for the funds or blows the whole thing up by vetoing his own party's refusal to give up the money.

Obviously there are more than a few senators & congressmen who realize that handing that money over willingly to the banks will more likely than not result in them being voted out of office in 2 years.



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 12:31 PM
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reply to post by burdman30ott6
 


I don't see how Obama can lay the blame for the PR about the TARP on Bush. After all he was one of the Senators who voted for it. He knew there were no stipulations as to how the money was to be used. Saying otherwise is disengenuos if not an outright lie.

reply to dbriefed

I didn't even mention the continuing situation in housing because in my mind there is no doubt that home prices will continue to fall in most areas through 09. Ramping unemployment will be as much of a downer as ARM resets. Due to negative equity many have already reset and also many have defaulted from walk aways. CPDAMAN makes a good point about resets into a low-long-term interest rate environment might blunt the damage of upcoming resets. The residential real estate component of our economy only has two possible options for equillibrium to be regained. Either prices come down, or wages go up to where the average home is affordable on the average wage (home prices in the 2.5-3.5 xs income range) financed on a 30yr with 10-20% down. If I were a betting man (and I sometimes am) I know which of the two I would put my money on.

I'm with ya CP on your thoughts on deflation. Those with a hyper-inflation thesis are missing a huge point. You can't have rampant inflation without wage inflation. Denninger has some good thoughts on this here . How can Bernanke, Paulson, and POTUS get us spending when they've given over a trillion already to the Banks, GSEs, and insurance companies, and can't get them to spend it on anything but shoring up balance sheets and 3 card monte with bad bank assetts?

I saw the times article you referenced in your post, and almost started a thread on it. For anyone who hasn't read it, let me just post a little tidbit.


Instead of reducing taxes on interest payments, the Government could tax all bank deposits and other risk-free savings. This would create a negative risk-free interest rate, encouraging savers either to invest in property, shares and other productive assets - or simply to save less and consume more. In either case, the result would be more consumption and physical investment, less unemployment and faster recovery from the slump.


Punish savers and make them spend money

In that type of environment, you're better off digging a hole and stuffing your money in it than putting it in a bank.



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 12:31 PM
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Originally posted by cpdaman

It may come down to dramatic measures such as debt jubilee's and competive one time devaluations against gold that stops the spiral downward in prices (not necessarily living standards) also perhaps with a world war that will grow the debt

as far as the topic (LOL) i will look into that.........right now it appears the consumer will be the next shoe to drop .... CONSUMER CREDIT may drop up to 40% this year!



I agree 100%... the real threat to TPTB is indeed deflation...


"Hyperinflation", or even "Serious Inflation" (similar to what we had in the 1970s) is impossible without a means to transmit the rise in prices into wages.


From HERE



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 12:44 PM
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Originally posted by jefwane
I don't see how Obama can lay the blame for the PR about the TARP on Bush. After all he was one of the Senators who voted for it. He knew there were no stipulations as to how the money was to be used. Saying otherwise is disengenuos if not an outright lie.


I think it's less a PR move over the funds themself, as Obama is on record this week as saying the money needs to be released. It's all about the fact that Congress is very likely to refuse to release the funds, making the presidential veto the only way to get them. He probably figures it would be a serious blow to the early days of his presidency to start out vetoing a Democrat led congress within days of taking office.

The indications of strife between congress & Obama before he's even been sworn in are pretty fascinating. Any other time I'd actually be amused and enjoying it. Unfortunately, we really do need the branches to work together closely right now or else we'll end up with an open lack of government cohesion and cooperation at a time where the markets & large employers are very closely looking for the opposite. The honeymoon seems to be over and the wedding hasn't even taken place yet.



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 05:30 PM
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my head is spinning over the economic future

one thing to look out for is the UNemployment rate and consumer spending creating a VICIOUS negative feed-back loop.

stimulus checks -tax rebates and the kitchen sink will be thrown at U.s consumers.....one key will be how much is used to buy new stuff....and how much is saved (given uncertain job status) and how much is used to pay off debt



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 05:34 PM
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Originally posted by cpdaman
stimulus checks -tax rebates and the kitchen sink will be thrown at U.s consumers.....one key will be how much is used to buy new stuff....and how much is saved (given uncertain job status) and how much is used to pay off debt


They aren't actually trying to fix the system they are just trying to get it another mile or two down the road.


It's all comming down.

3 foreclosure waves - 3 buildings

[edit on 13-1-2009 by In nothing we trust]



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 06:02 PM
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reply to post by jefwane
 


IMO, the "Underworld" as we could call it, will implode next..

I am talking about Small Businesses .. when consumer spending dropping dramatically, coupled with the move towards cheap, big box stores like Walmart, hell, it doesn't look good to be in small business trade.

Small businesses lack the buying power to compete with the cheap prices of huge conglomerate institutions, again a perfect storm of decreased credit, rising minimum wages all across the country, increasing taxes, low consumer confidence/spending..

But it won't be on the news.

Their employees most likely won't apply for unemployment..

You will just see more and more companies fold, as well as far fewer starting up.

So that's my guess, you will see a continuing acceleration of small businesses going under and far fewer start ups.



posted on Jan, 13 2009 @ 07:41 PM
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reply to post by Rockpuck
 


That is a very valid point rockpuck. I'm glad you brought that up. I guess it's really a triple whammy on them when you think about it. You mentioned the retrenching of the consumer along with the pricing power of the big boxes, and the third is limited credit availabillity for small businesses. It's a shame too, small business are really the real engines of economic growth in the US. I've seen absolutely zero actions by the .gov that would benefit them to date.



posted on Jan, 14 2009 @ 03:22 PM
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Originally posted by jefwane
I realize that CPDAMAN's 2009 thread was closed because it turned more into an investment thread than a discussion with a conspiracy related theme....


I was under the impression that it began as "an investment thread"



Originally posted by jefwane
Gold seems to have topped at $1000/oz and seems to be printing lower highs and lower lows since (which my amatuer TA says is Bearish).


Gold seemed to have "topped" in Nov 04 @ $450...May 06 @ $725 etc. These corrections were also characterized by periods of lower highs - lower lows. Technically, these were interim basing phases...followed by sustained breakouts.

My point being; multi-year trends need to be evaluated from a historical perspective...and in the case of Gold, analysed against monetary fundamentals du jour. A 10yr chart will reveal that Gold is still well above it's lower long-term-trendline. The major trend remains intact, and if Gold can hold the 50DMA...this has bullish implications for the relative strength of a breakout...if/when it occurs.

While credit goes to the more visible media pundits...the deadly effects of unregulated derivatives...the eventual monetization of US sovereign debt, yes, these events and others...were accurately predicted by prominent "gold bugs" as far back as 02/03.

****

In terms of What Blows up Next?...on the global scale, there exists so many vulnerabilities. Major blow-up?...perhaps treasuries around April/May.

****

Here's a mystery maybe some-one can shed some light-on. Citi has joined JPM in advancing it's 4Q reporting date. Both were scheduled to report just after the new administration takes the helm on Jan 20 (Jan 22 and Jan 21 respectively). I'm convinced there is a connection...just not sure what it is?

**This post represents my personal observations/deductions...and I reserve the right to be a fallible human being. None of the information in this post, or any of my posts, should be construed as a reccomendation, or investment advice.**



posted on Jan, 14 2009 @ 03:33 PM
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Originally posted by OBE1

Here's a mystery maybe some-one can shed some light-on. Citi has joined JPM in advancing it's 4Q reporting date. Both were scheduled to report just after the new administration takes the helm on Jan 20 (Jan 22 and Jan 21 respectively). I'm convinced there is a connection...just not sure what it is?



That one is easy as pie to answer. Notice that Bernanke suddenly is talking doom and gloom again and begging for the second half of the TARP funds to be released. Also notice that Obama and Bush have been openly conspiring to get those funds released before Obama is sworn in, by Bush's veto if necessary. The financial reports for both banks will come in looking very bad, possibly even catastrophic for Citi. Either this weekend or first thing Monday, Bush will come out and say that Citi is about to colapse and, in the best interests of this country cannot be allowed to fail so he, GW Bush, is using whatever presidential authority he has to force the remaining half of the TARP money (Hmm... is half of a large quantity of imaginary money still money?) to be released to the Treasury and Federal Reserve. Voila. Bush rides off into the sunset having added one final screw up to a very long list, allowing Obama to take office and remain relatively clean for at least a few days more than he would had he been stuck having to pry those funds away from a suddenly Bailout-unfriendly Congress.

The financial reports being moved up simply demonstrates what we've known since day one... the banks are complicitly in bed with the government and they are working hand in hand, cheek to cheek, unmentionable to unmentionable to fleece the American people and future generations of Americans out of as much money as they possibly can.



posted on Jan, 14 2009 @ 05:54 PM
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reply to post by burdman30ott6
 


That would be the more obvious conclusion, but not as much fun as another theory being floated around the web....

"For the past 8 years JP Morgan has enjoyed the Bush Administration whitewash accounting ability because they were a partner in the war on terror. Using special provisions in the Patriot Act, JP Morgan was legally able to cook their books and not report according to US GAAP under the guise of "National Security Issues". Included in this, of course, was immunity from prosecution in the commodity rigging operations.

By moving up their earnings report, I believe JP Morgan is using their final "Get Out of Jail Free" card under the Bush Administration because the new administration may not continue the financial cover-ups.
" - Bix (Le Metropole Cafe).

I remain undecided on this reporting issue...but it is interesting.



posted on Jan, 14 2009 @ 06:40 PM
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The financial reports for both banks will come in looking very bad, possibly even catastrophic for Citi.


No bank is expected to show a profit (not that dividends are to be paid anyways, eh?) but we should already expect a severe earnings report from Citi .. if we look at the news and government actions in the past 2 months.



GW Bush, is using whatever presidential authority he has to force the remaining half of the TARP mone


The "bail out" was passed by Democrats, I hardly believe that the new Congress will think twice about releasing the second half of the TARP funds. the plan for how to spend the money has already been decided and laid out in the Treasury, a change of power won't disrupt the plan.



Voila. Bush rides off into the sunset having added one final screw up to a very long list, allowing Obama to take office and remain relatively clean for at least a few days more than he would had he been stuck having to pry those funds away from a suddenly Bailout-unfriendly Congress.


Again, the bailout was passed by Democrats, there will be no opposition..

Not sure about "bail out unfriendly" either.. seeing as both parties cannot wait for Obama to get into office, and are already planning a massive 700billion - 1.5 Trillion dollar "stimulus package" .. the only thing undecided is what special interest groups projects will be put in the bill.

OBE's idea is looking more logical at this point.

PS. Citi's been well capitalized by the US Government, and the Federal Reserve insured and backed over $350 billion dollars in mortgage assets.. Citi, of all banks, is not close to collapse at this point.

[edit on 1/14/2009 by Rockpuck]



posted on Jan, 14 2009 @ 07:00 PM
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citi is being propped up by the gov't otherwise they are insolvent.

i think it is an interesting point made that "they" want to get this second trenche of TARP given away under bush.......because sure Obama voted for it......but that was when there was hope that it would work......now it is obvious that it is filling a black hole......and not to mention the funds from this bailout that go to banks are not tied to responsible measures and check and balances like the Big 3's bailout.......if Barak H.O gives away this 350 to the banks MINUS the conditions that they gave the Big 3 money.....the public will be pissed .....especially the 40% plus percent that didn't vote for him (but even those who bought into the hope).

many claim the whole darn banking industry is insolvent should they have to mark to market and take some offbalance sheet items back on.......a few "insiders" strongly insist that banks would have been insolvent 5 years ago were it not for the Credit default swaps they exchange among each other totalling in the trillions.

Obe 1 why do you propose spring time frame as a date for a treasury blow up?

I was also reading how Corporate defaults look to soar in 2010 because most company's were able to secure financing last year or 07 thru 09....but after that........t r o u b l e.

but at least there are big SALES!




[edit on 14-1-2009 by cpdaman]



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