All I can say is wow what a day. The stock market was crushed today as the DOW and NASDAQ both plunged almost 6% on continuing weak economic news combined with fears in the credit markets.
Lets get right into it folks. I have been warning that the soaring AAA spreads would eventually catch the eyes of equity traders and create a selloff in the stock market. It looks like today was the day. Take a look at the AAA spreads:
Spreads are soaring higher than housing prices did from 2003-2005! Folks, spreads have almost doubled from a few weeks ago. The literally gone parabolic the last few days. Hank's insistence of using the TARP to inject capital into the banks versus buying AAA paper is absolutely killing the value of this paper.
This in turn is killing the banks because all of them own gobs of these crap sandwhiches. This explains why Goldman, Citi, and Bank of America are all tanking on a daily basis. If the government doesn't step up and buy this paper, there is a chance that no one will if its not government guaranteed. The non guaranteed AAA paper could very well possibly be worth pennies on the dollar when its all said and done!
The government guaranteed AAA debt is also losing value because investors are starting to question if the government can make good on the promise of backing this debt. This is a flat out disaster folks. If this paper is worthless, our banks that hold this stuff are toast. I guarantee you that one of the big banks like Citi doesn't make it through this downturn when this is all said and done. This is a flat out crisis folks. I don't see any other answer other than to mark all of it to market, creat transparency, and suffer the consequences.
This is a better option than the USA government defaulting on itself in an attempt to prop up this AAA garbage. This is an absolute mess!
Was it investor's or the Fed that flocked into treasuries today?
I am sure it was a lot of both as the markets tanked. The Fed rumor was floated on CNBC(video). If this is true look out! The Fed may be attempting to buy the 10-year in a desperate attempt to lower mortgage rates and prop up the housing sector. Interventions like this are how disasters are created folks.
I mean think about it. How has government intervention been working for us so far? Umm lets see the TARP? Housing Bailout? Bear Stearns? AIG? Ban on short selling? Discount window? I could go on and on but the answer is the same to all of them. None of the interventions have worked. In fact its often made things worse! The fact that they are now potentially interfering with the credit markets is extremely dangerous and could trigger a bond dislocation.
The markets continue to fall despite massive intervention. The scary thing about the Fed buying treasuries is they can only do this for so long. When the music stops and they stop buying the treasuries is when you could see a massive bond dislocation. Yields would then reverse and shoot to the moon! Double bigit interest rates could happen in a matter of weeks.
When you see the historical charts on long term bonds, it does appear that something fishy is going on:
We are on the brink of some type of watershed moment in the markets. It appears the Fed is out of bullets as this debt bubble continues to collapse.
A drop in bonds that you can seen above tells you that the credit markets are pricing in a deflationary depression type scenario. The only other way long term bonds drop like this is Fed intervention.
Either scenario are major negatives for the stock market IMO. Keep a close eye on the credit markets folks. If these AAA binds blow it could have devastating consequences for all of the markets.
I have no idea where this all takes us. I am afraid we are heading rapidly into the abyss. Lets all pray we find a solution that gets us out of all this. I am becoming less hopefull by the day.
We are rapidly losing control of this collapse, and the markets may decide to hit the panic button at any moment. I have a feeling that we could see a capitulation in stocks within the next week. I stayed short heading into the close. Santa landing on the trading floor tomorrow couldn't create a bounce in my view.
Technically we closed at 806 on the S&P. This is below the 818 low. The one hope the market have to move higher is we technically haven't strongly broke the lows. The next stop down is the 760's on the S&P which are the 2002 lows. If that doesn't hold then hold onto your hat.