It’s all about data. The decentralized web is underway – or so we would like to believe Sir Tim Berners-Lee as he sets forth on his new adventure Solid as he builds a new open-source platform that aims to let users take control of their data. He gets serious as he takes a sabbatical from MIT for Solid. This announcement last week was fortuitous as it coincided with the sordid details of Facebook’s hacking. There were three bugs identified that allowed access to tokens in Facebook and then to other accounts. They reset access to nearly 50 million users and then another 40 million as a precaution. This is what Forbes called an Internet catastrophe: What’s most worrying of all, though, is what the hack has proven: that a company with the resources and power of Facebook can be robbed of keys that allow access to millions of accounts across the web. Given the keys allowed the hacker to take over any account using a Facebook login, the real number of affected individuals is likely far higher than 50 million. A vast number of people have trusted Facebook would be able to keep their login information safe, just as they do with Google and other tech providers. What does this all have to do with digital assets or crypto currencies or the blockchain? Plenty. This last week’s data focus goes back to the basics principles of a distributed ledger – decentralization – and its ability to help ferret out fraud and hacks. If everyone has a copy, changing the original isn’t […]
Nicolás Maduro’s recent visit to China has been highly criticized because it was done in the worst of the Venezuela’s crisis. Almost 4 million people have left this country in recent years — a country that is ranked on the 2018 Misery Index as the most miserable country of the world. Hyperinflation is destroying the hope of millions of Venezuelans that for many reasons continue living there and suffering the misery that socialism has achieved. Maduro’s visit to China is understandable. China has given Venezuela around 65 billion dollars in loans, cash, and investments. Venezuela still owes more than 20 billion dollars, and as Russ Dallen said, the Chinese want to get paid back and the only way is with Venezuela’s oil production back up and running. This means that the Asian country is practically the owner of Venezuela’s oil. The regime has mortgaged the country’s wealth, and future generations will suffer the consequences. With an oil production perpetually hampered by the regime’s policies, decaying technology, and the rampant corruption linked with the drug-trafficking and terrorist activities of the main heads of the regime, the 5 billion dollars obtained during Maduro’s current visit will only worsen the sad situation that Venezuelans are suffering. At the end of July 2018, the National Assembly estimated that each week six Venezuelan children die of starvation. Some of the most important universities in Venezuela made a survey in 2017 (ENCOVI2017) and in that time 87% of Venezuelan households were poor; 9 of 10 Venezuelans could not pay for food; 8.2 million […]
Previous: On Monday the 1st of October, trading on the euro closed down. The rate rose to 1.1625 during the European session before dropping to 1.1564 in the US. I found the market’s behaviour confusing yesterday given that the euro dropped against the dollar on the back of positive news concerning Brexit, a rise in oil prices, and a drop in US10Y bond yields. Brent oil rose to 85.30 USD per barrel, which provided support to commodity currencies. The USDCAD currency pair dropped to 1.2782. The loonie rose as the euro took a dive. Moreover, this all happened against the backdrop of a decline in US10Y bond yields. Aside from oil, the loonie was also propped up by Canada agreeing to a new three-way free trade deal called the USMCA (US-Mexico-Canada Agreement). September’s ISM manufacturing PMI disappointed markets. The report came out lower than the previous value, and lower than the forecasted value. The release of this PMI data stopped the US dollar’s rise in its tracks, but now it’s back on the attack. Day’s news (GMT+3): 11:30 UK: PMI construction (Sep). 12:00 Eurozone: PPI (Aug). 19:45 US: Fed’s Powell speech. Fig 1. EURUSD hourly chart. Current situation: During Monday’s European session, the euro rose to 1.1625, missing out on my target of 1.1650. It then dropped from the LB balance line to 1.1563. I had predicted a recovery for the euro to 1.1618, but the bears scuppered this, pushing the rate down to 1.1547. The pair has exited the channel. […]
RBA leaving rates unchanged until 2019 will widen the rate differential between Australia and the US, short AUD/USD? RBA has kept its neutral bias, suggesting rates could remain unchanged until mid-2019. RBA Governor Philip Lowe left rates unchanged for the 26th month in a row at a record low of 1.5%. Lowe stated that even though economic growth is running ‘above trend’, unemployment and underemployment are still higher than what RBA is comfortable with. We saw Australia’s GDP pick up pace, growing by 3.4% from the start of the year to the end of June, the fastest in close to six years. Unemployment rate, on the other hand, is at 5.3%. Household debt is the RBA’s main concern which stands at a record 190.5% of income. Furthermore, out-of-cycle mortgage hikes by 3 of the 4 major banks in Australia has worsened the mortgage situation. Trade tensions between the US and China contribute to the downside risks Australia is still facing, with Governor Lowe warning that ‘one ongoing uncertainty regarding the global outlook stems from the direction of international trade policy in the United States’. AUD/USD short remains attractive amid the monetary policy divergence between the two countries.
After reading about the trade war all summer, now the world is actually feeling the impact. As the price of oil and the cost of goods continues to rise… Video Length: 00:03:54
Overview: The US dollar is rising against most of the major and emerging market currencies. The Swiss franc and the Japanese yen are the exceptions and are holding their own. Global equities are mixed. Asia, excluding Japan, was mostly lower, with 1.2% losses in Taiwan and South Korea and 2.5% drop in Hong Kong and in the H-shares that trade there. Core 10-year bond yields, including US, Germany, and the UK are off three-four basis points, while peripheral European bond yields are being dragged higher by the new surge in Italian yields. Italy’ 10-year yield is up 11 bp at 3.40%. It was at 2.80% five days ago. The two-year yield is up 25 bp to 1.56%, more than twice the 71 bp that was seen five days ago. EC President Juncker rejected Italian Finance Minister’s arguments and warned of a Greek-style crisis. USD: After consolidating yesterday, the Dollar Index is pushing higher today. It is approaching the highs from early September near 95.65, and the 95.80 area is a retracement objective of the decline since mid-August. The euro is testing support near $1.1525 and then $1.15. A 1.1 bln euro option at $1.15 expires tomorrow. The dollar found sellers lurking above JPY114.00. Initial support is pegged at JPY113.55 and then JPY113.25. There is a $370 mln option at JPY113.20 that will be cut today. Sterling is has slipped through $1.30 for the first time since September 12. There are two options that are in play that expire today. There are […]