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  • Brazil Hikes Rates Again!

    In This Issue..

    * Currency rally holds on to gains...
    * Rate hikes begin to add up...
    * Trade & Budget Deficit monsters...
    * Canada posts a trade surplus!

    Good day... And a Happy Friday to one and all! Let's go on record right out of the starters' blocks this morning, and say this will be a Fantastico Friday, eh?

    Well... What a rally in the risk assets yesterday! And for once, when the rally fizzled out yesterday afternoon, profits weren't taken in the overnight markets... Instead we saw a consolidation, if you will, of the price gains on Thursday in the overnight markets. That's nice to see, eh? For it had been the pattern of recent times to just sell off any gains, and end up back on square one, or even lower than the starting level. So, like I said, this was very nice to see... I checked the levels last night before I went to bed, and noticed that there had not been any sell off, and thought, what a great Friday it would be tomorrow, if these can hold throughout the night... And they did!...
  • Germany Weighs Possible Bail Out...

    In This Issue..

    * Some healing in the currencies...
    * Brazilian real heats up!
    * Is there a secret central bankers meeting?
    * Aussie Confidence weakens...

    Good day... And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! It sure turned out to be a Terrific Tuesday yesterday, even with 5 inches of snow on the ground! There are rumors going round that someone's underground, and she will rock you, no wait, the rumors are... 1. There is a secret central bank meeting going on, and 2. that Germany is weighing bailout possibilities for Greece...

    The latter really lit a fire under the risk assets yesterday, allowing stocks, currencies and commodities to enjoy a day in the sun, away from the shade the dollar was casting on the risk assets. Stocks turned around and had a strong showing for the day, Gold was up $15, and currencies, led by the Brazilian real gained back some precious ground VS the dollar. I know that sounded a little strange saying 'led by the Brazilian real' as I normally associate the currencies being 'led by the euro'......
  • A Mixed Bad of Data...

    In This Issue..

    * A Bias to take on risk...
    * China's Factory Output soars!
    * Brazil exports "stuff"!
    * Calling a bottom in Gold...

    Good day... And a Happy Friday to one and all! The 40 mph winds have stopped, which makes the cold a little more bearable... So... With the sun out yesterday, I would have to say that today will be a Fantastico Friday... Our office get together is tonight, should be a good time...

    Well... Yesterday, the non-dollar currencies looked like they were ready to break out of their funk against the dollar, led by the high yielders of Australia, and especially New Zealand... But, that flamed out as the day went on as the data for the U.S. was mixed, and did not give anyone a warm and fuzzy about the general direction of the economy....
  • ECB & BOE leave rates unchanged...

    In This Issue..

    * ECB & BOE leave rates unchanged...
    * Trichet makes a mistake in judgment...
    * Asian central banks defend the $..
    * Gold pauses...

    Good day...Had a horrible night here in St. Louis, as every one of our teams let victory slip away. As you all know, Chuck drove to Columbia to watch his MIZZOU Tigers take on one of their arch rivals in a rare Thursday night matchup. The game went well into the night, as it was delayed due to problems with the lights at the stadium, so Chuck probably didn't get home until early this morning. I'll have the con on the Pfennig today, but Chuck will be back in the saddle again on Monday.

    As predicted, both European central banks kept interest rates unchanged. The European Central Bank and the Bank of England kept their benchmark interest rates at record lows in an effort to keep stimulating their economies. Trichet signaled that the ECB has no plans to raise rates in the near future, stating that the current level is 'appropriate' for the current economic environment. 'The recovery is expected to be rather uneven,' Trichet said. 'It will be supported in the short term by temporary factors but will be hampered in the medium term by balance sheet issues at financial and non-financial institutions.'...
  • Patriot Day...

    In This Issue..

    * Currencies have strong rally!
    * Trade Deficit jumps 16.3% in July!
    * HR 1207 Gets a hearing!
    * Gold gets back to $1,000!

    Good day... And a Happy Friday to one and all! Today is Patriot Day in the U.S. and a day that brings back memories of cowardly attacks on our country 8 years ago. I remember the shock and horror on everyone's faces, and that image will remain with me to the grave. I also remember trying to write the Pfennig the 'day after'... It just didn't seem that important of a thing to do, but a reader told me that to keep things as 'normal' as possible was the best thing I could do... So... I wrote...

    OK... The currencies, and this time I mean the majority of them not just euro and yen, added to their gains this week VS the dollar yesterday... The Big Dog, euro, is once again knocking at the door to 1.46... Who's that knocking at the door, Who's that ringing the bell? Do me a favor, open the door, and let 'em in......
  • A Rout On The Dollar!

    In This Issue..

    * Currencies rally strong!
    * China is upset with printing of dollars...
    * The UN talks of a new currency...
    * Unemployment rate rises to 9.7%

    Good day... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! A long Holiday Weekend, that was quite good for yours truly! A great tailgate, a great Missouri Tigers victory, 3 of 4 for the Cardinals, a great end of summer bar-b-que at the Butler House, and a day to recharge the batteries... Really couldn't ask for much more... Yes, the weather could have cooperated a bit better, but, hey, that's nitpicking!

    Well... Last night I was checking the markets to see what was going on, since I had walked away from the desk on Friday afternoon... And much to my surprise, the currencies, led by the euro, seemed to be breaking out of their recent trading ranges. The euro was trading 1.4335, when I checked then... And when I turned on the currency screens here at the office this morning, the euro has stretched that move to the 1.4480 level! WOW! Looks to me as though the deficits that the dollar drags around are not looking to sharp to investors... But then, what took them so long to dump that fashion faux pas? Ahhh, grasshopper... As I've said many times before... The markets will do what they are supposed to do... Just not when... Which means, sometimes you have to wait... And wait... And think that they guy ranting each day in the Pfennig is barking up the wrong tree!...
  • Cash For Clunkers Is A Clunker!

    In This Issue..

    * Currencies trade in a tight range again...
    * U.S. Retail Sales are a clunker!
    * RBA's Stevens is upbeat!
    * Thoughts on Brazil...

    Good day... And a Happy Friday to one and all! The end of the week... It's been a tough week for yours truly, as I've hobble around in pain all week. But, as I recall, I promised 2 years ago that I would not complain about these things in the future... So! I carry on!

    Well... Front and center this morning... The currencies are trading near levels they were when I signed off yesterday morning. They did have a brief rally, after the U.S. Retail Sales data showed some real rot on the 'recover is here' vine... But that rally was snuffed out, as the risk aversion campers came back to the markets......
  • Budget Deficit Triples!

    In This Issue..

    * Currencies rebound
    * Budget Deficit makes up for Trade data...
    * China's currency reserves continue to grow...
    * High yielders are best performers...

    Good day... And a Marvelous Monday to you! And a Happy Easter Monday to those who get the day off! I'm still battling this, whatever it is that I have, which means I spent the weekend in the sick bay... UGH! Oh well, we carry on... But... Talk about short-n-sweet... That's today's Pfennig for sure!

    The lack of volume on Friday didn't yield any wild swings, and the currencies pared their losses from the day before (trade deficit plunges)... This morning, the currencies, led by the euro, are moving higher VS the dollar, but at this point it's baby steps... The bias to sell dollars hangs over the currencies however... It seems to me that it's very much like trying to hold a kid back from ripping open their Christmas presents... It sure seems inevitable, but when is the question... As I used to say in my presentations, imagine if you will a big old Ford rambling down an icy country road, and it begins to spin out of control... You know for sure that you're heading toward that guard rail, and your Ford will make impact with that guard rail, it's just a matter of time.......
  • It's Not My Fault, It Must Be Yours!

    * What's $78 Billion among friends? * Currencies fade with bias to buy Gold... * Could the Carry Trade Unwind be done? * U.S. soccer beats Mexico... ** It's Not My Fault, It Must Be Yours! Good day... And a Thunderin' Thursday to you! Well... Front and center this morning, I'm going to tell you something that will surprise a few and make a few happy. I've had my say on the Bailouts, TARP, Stimulus, and spending. I've beaten them to a pulp, and some readers have expressed their contempt with me carrying on with this beating. So... Unless something cracks, I'll just leave it all as it stands, and go on with life. This all has been too much for my blood pressure to take! I'll report the facts on this stuff, and leave the commentary for people that think they "know better"... For instance, it was reported the other day that the Treasury Dept. has overpaid for stock received from TARP recipients by $78 Billion. You see, for every $100 given in TARP, the Treasury was to receive $100 in stock / assets, but when all the beans are counted, the Treasury is $78 Billion short on stock /assets... But, what the heck, what's $78 Billion among friends?...
  • Geithner's Plan Disappoints...

    * Trade Deficit to narrow further... * Currencies rally, then sell off... * Obama's stimulus loses backers... * Riksbank cuts 100 BPS unexpectedly... ** Geithner's Plan Disappoints... Good day... And a Wonderful Wednesday to you! Well... Tim Geithner didn't experience a Terrific Tuesday, as I had wished for him... And now, it looks as though the shine is coming off the new President as more and more individuals are "not buying" his appeal to the nation to get a stimulus package passed... The currencies rallied and then sold off after Geithner gave the details of his "new and improved" plan... We've got some potential market moving data printing today and more! So... Let's go to the tape!...
  • Risk Aversion Reigns Supreme!

    * Currencies under dollar pressure * How strong can yen get? * TARP... * ECB rate questions... ** Risk Aversion Reigns Supreme! Good day... And a Terrific Tuesday to you! I'm draggin' the line this morning, but will get through this with my usual you know what and vinegar! The euro is trading at a one month low this morning, and the high yielders are getting stepped on again after enjoying a month a risk taking in the sun. That about explains everything, so I'll go the Big Finish now... Gotcha! Let's see what else is up on this cold and blustery Terrific Tuesday... So... It looks as though Risk Aversion is reigning supreme once again. I just don't buy into the dollar being the "safe haven" with all that's going on here. But, that's the way it is, and I can't change it. On a side bar, I used to have a customer that was convinced that I could move the markets with the Pfennig... I always thanked him for his complimentary remarks, but would hang up and have a chuckle, as IF I could change the way things are with my simple, humble little newsletter!...
  • Who Owes Who?

    * Trading theme pushes yen higher... * Settlement day for Lehman CDO's... * Oil price fall hurts loonies... * Gold climbs back above $900... ** Who Owes Who? Good day... And a Happy Friday to one and all! It certainly doesn't look as though it will be a Fantastico Friday in stocks, as yesterday was a bloodletting, and overnight the Japanese stock market sold off 11%, and Europe is down about 9% at this point. UGH! This is getting quite ugly... But remember what I've been saying this week about the currency trading theme... When things look bleak, the dollar goes up... And when it looks as though all the stimulus might work, the dollar sells off... This has been quite evident in Japanese yen overnight, as stocks sold off 11%, the currency rallied to a 98 handle from 101 yesterday... And... Then in dollar trading, other than yen, the dollar is stronger this morning, pushing the euro back to the 1.35 handle. The high yielders, which enjoyed a day in the sun yesterday before U.S. stocks took a turn on the slippery slope, got whacked hard overnight! UGH!...
  • Falling In And Out Of Love...

    * Euro sinks to 1-year low... * RBNZ cuts rates 25 BPS... * Carry Trades continue to unwind... * Fannie and Freddie cause problems for banks... ** Falling In And Out Of Love... Good day... And a Thunderin' Thursday to you! Today we mark 7 years since the "monsters" attacked our great nation and thousands of lives were lost needlessly. My blood still boils at the thought of what happened on Sept 11, 2001, and the thoughts of the twin towers coming down still flashes in my mind. 7 years ago today, we witnessed the horrific scenes from terrorists in our country. I recall trying to come up with words the next day, and just couldn't, so I stuck to currencies, in attempt to keep things as normal as they could be. I hope everyone flies their flag today in remembrance of this day 7 years ago. OK... We're seeing a complete meltdown in the currencies this morning, folks.. The euro has fallen to the low 1.39 handle, and all is looking quite bleak for the single unit right now. Our metals trader, Kristin, sent me this note that she came across regarding the euro......