Blain’s Morning Porridge – The Property Chronicle
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Blain’s Morning Porridge

The Macro View

Not as glamorous as Brooklyn, as cool as Staten Island, or as private as Manhattan… ”*

*In the headlines this morning

Bit of jolt to stock market’s yesterday – US Retail Sales crash, Trade War concerns, slowdown in China, stagnation in Germany, and a growing realisation all these things plus a modest earnings season point to a downturn. Coke took a spanking as it warned it expects sales to slow. It’s all happening so soon? But what’s to worry about in bonds – the Fed looks to be on hold, long-term rates will hereabouts for eternity with zero inflation, while the Bank of China is likely to ease to reflate the economy with further stimulus, and the ECB-G (The European Central Bank of Germany) is (probably) dusting off plans to relaunch QE2 as the European economy slides in Germany’s wake.

Blain’s Morning Porridge is also carried on The Property Chronicle – “Real estate, alternative real assets and other diversions” – check it out on:

Bloomberg reports that 75% of US CFOs expect recession by 2020, even though a majority of economists it surveys expect US Growth to remain positive this year. Meanwhile, issues such as the rising number of defaults on cards, student loans and auto-loans may be factors underlying Jeff Gundlach’s comments about the widening gap between consumer sentiment and expectations as the most recessionary signal at present. It sure feels like something isn’t quite right out there..

Is the trade war going to be a second front for Donald Trump? Although many China-watchers believe Beijing is desperate to secure a face-saving deal at the earliest opportunity, I’ve been quietly told the fact Trump now seems to have trapped himself in the “Wall at any-cost” emergency powers, plus rumours he’s willing to extend the March 1 tariff deadline, is giving the Chinese hope they can win concessions and delay through the trade summit between Xi and Trump. El-Donald is said to be close to declaring a national emergency to get his hands on $8 bln of military funding and control of the US Corps of Engineers to build his Wall. Nice.

As for the UK…. Well let me come clean. I just don’t know anymore….

The BBC has allegedly put editorial guidance in place that Theresa May losing anything but a full-blown confidence vote is no longer news. Apparently, she lost yet another vote last night – rather brilliantly pissing off both hardened remainers and brexiteers – but what it was about? I have not a breeze of an idea? And should I care? My political chums tell me there are now so many competing streams of contradictory Brexit bluster doing the rounds of Westminster that there is zero chance of agreement.

So I found myself watching some self-important Tory MP on Brek-Drek this morning –  although his lips were moving all I heard was “la, la, la, la,”. I tried to focus, but it was still nonsense I simply could not understand. I picked up my iPad and opened the paper to update myself on what the latest thang is all about.. but no, even the FT reports on Brexit read like they were lifted straight from Through the Looking Glass as they blathered on about Brillig, Slithey Toves and Vorpal Swords. I’ve tried asking colleagues in the office – but they stick their thumbs in the ears and hide under their desks. I called up one of my key political contacts, but he decided to pretend he was a penguin rather than explain the current internal politics of Brexit.

Deal or No Deal? Does it actually matter? The amount of political hot air and nonsense expended by political opportunists will likely proved inversely proportional to the actual effects on Brexit Deal.  Guess we just get on with it… Note to all ambassadors: Please sign our WTO letter.

(* see headline quote…)

The Macro View

About Bill Blain

Bill Blain

Bill Blain is Strategist for Shard Capital, a leading investment firm. Bill is a well known broadcaster and commentator, with over 30-years experience working for leading investment banks and brokerages at senior levels. He's been closely involved in the growth and development of the global fixed income markets, and pioneered complex financial products including capital, asset-backed securities and private placements. Increasingly, he's involved in the Real and Alternative Assets sector seeking to explain their complexity, how to generate decorrelated returns, and create liquidity in non-listed assets. Bill is a passionate sailor, talentless painter, plays guitar badly, is learning the bagpipes, and built a train-set in his attic.

Articles by Bill Blain

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